Naggy, Achy Shoulders!
There’s nothing worse than having a naggy, achy pain in your shoulder and not knowing why it’s there. Fair enough, if you fall and land on it, or if you lift something in an awkward position, then you have a logical explanation for it. But, when it’s just there for no reason………WHY?
Thankfully, a reason can be found and often it doesn’t require a costly MRI scan to find out. At Midlands Physical Therapy, we can find out a lot of information by listening to your story and the events leading up to the pain and looking at the movement and strength in your shoulder, elbow, wrist and thoracic spine.
‘Why include the elbow, wrist and thoracic spine?’ you may ask.
Well, when there is no exact method of injury, i.e a direct fall or an awkward lift, then quite often the tissues in your shoulder may be overreacting or compensating for an imbalance elsewhere in the body. So in my clinic, I will always check out the closest neighbours, which are the elbow wrist and thoracic spine.
So, what may someone with a ‘naggy’, achy shoulder be complaining of?
If your not sure if you you have a ‘naggy’, achy shoulder, then see if you match any of the following.
- The pain can be felt at the front of the shoulder or at the back, in shoulder blade area.
- This pain may be present when your doing absolutely nothing.
- You may get pain in your shoulder after doing a bit of activity, like house work for example.
- You may get pain in the front of your shoulder when your walking or running.
- This pain may occur when you sleep on that side at night.
- This pain might happen when your sitting at the laptop.
- This pain may come on when your stressed.
- There is no real movement that aggrevates it. It’s just there.
Let’s cut to the chase – The Tips Section
So, here are 3 things you can do to ease that annoying shoulder pain
Tip 1 – Bring your shoulder through it’s full range of motion at least twice per day.
Very often, people don’t challenge their movement enough and just perform the same type of movements every day. By bringing your shoulders through their full range of motion you really lengthen the tissues surrounding your shoulder. They also have to work hard at the same time to get into that end of range position. Great exercise for anyone who’s job involves a lot off sitting.
Tip 2 – Strengthen and Grip Hard
Having adequate strength in your shoulders is very important. If your body doesn’t feel like it has adequate strength or stability when performing a certain movement, then it will ‘tighten up’ the tissues to protect itself from injury. Now, strengthening your shoulders does not have to involve going to the gym. I aim to provide movements that are easy and practical for everyone to do at home.
So a quick tip is to grip harder when you are lifting something, like the fuel bucket for example, as this will activate some key muscles around your shoulder that provide stability and reduce your chance of it getting sore and achy.
Tip 3 – Work on your Thoracic Spine Mobility
A lack of mobility in your thoracic spine can be often be related to shoulder pain. There are a lot of muscles that move your shoulder which also attach to your rib cage. Your rib cage also attaches to your thoracic spine. You want to give as much positive feedback to your shoulder and surrounding joints, to reduce your chances of having an achy shoulder.
Living with shoulder pain is not normal so you should’nt accept that you have weak or ‘dodgy’ shoulders and will always have shoulder pain. This pain can be helped and your shoulders can be made stronger, so the pain does not returnn. While the 3 tips I’ve gone through in this blog may offer some relief, they will not be enough to make your pain go away for good and this is where an individual assessment and tailored treatment plan is gold.
If you would like to know more about what Midlands Physical Therapy can do for your shoulder pain, then book an appointment by clicking the button below
Alternatively, you get can call the clinic on 089 210 2586, if you would like to speak to me about you shoulder pain first.