Fight Frozen Shoulder Pain with These Exercises

Fight Frozen Shoulder Pain with These Exercises hover background

Apr 08

Frozen Shoulder—Help the Pain with These Exercises

frozen shoulder

If you have a frozen shoulder, it may almost seem impossible to accomplish everyday tasks like getting dressed or brushing your hair. Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a condition of restricted movement of the shoulder due to pain and stiffness. It typically affects only one shoulder, but one in five cases affect both shoulders. Your body is trying to keep your shoulder from further injury by immobilizing it.

It is not clearly known what causes frozen shoulder syndrome. Here are some of the most common risk factors that are associated with the condition:

  • Advanced age—common in ages 40 and over
  • A history of recent limb injury or immobility
  • Diabetes
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Gender—70% of people with frozen shoulder are women
  • Cardiovascular disease

There are three stages of frozen shoulder:

  1. Freezing stage—your shoulder will start to ache and become very painful when reaching for things
  2. Frozen stage—your shoulder may become increasingly stiff, severely limiting range of motion
  3. Thawing stage—movement in your shoulder may begin to improve and pain may start to decrease

Physical therapy can help treat frozen shoulder by providing you with exercises that you can use at home.  Frozen shoulder exercises can also stretch and loosen the muscles to help you regain mobility and range of motion.

Stretching Exercises—stretching exercises are meant to stretch the shoulder to the point of tension but not pain.  If you experience pain, you may be overstretching.  Stretching exercises help to loosen the tightened shoulder muscles and establish your normal range of motion.

Range of Motion Exercises—range of motion exercises are designed to maintain flexibility of the shoulder muscles and tendons.

Strengthening Exercises—strengthening and toning exercises will increase muscle and are an important part in your recovery from frozen shoulder.  Before beginning strengthening your muscles, warm up your joint with cardiovascular exercise.

Manual Therapy and Soft Tissue Techniques – a licensed and experienced physical therapist can provide skilled manual techniques to assist with stretching and range of motion exercises.  Physical therapists will safely and effectively assist you with these activities to help regain motion in the injured shoulder and teach you to care for your injury at home.

If you are suffering from frozen shoulder symptoms, take measures to ensure they don’t get worse and call your physical therapist today.  Schedule an appointment today with one of our experienced physical therapists.


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