Updated: Sep 12
Suffering shoulder pain is unpleasant and is a serious problem. It makes it difficult to sleep and also to perform daily tasks. However, in most cases, there are alternatives to pulling the trigger on surgery. While that might sound a little strange, there are quite a few options for treating shoulder pain without surgery. In this blog, you'll discover what non-surgical shoulder treatments are available to you at our New York pain management center and how you can avoid surgery.
Understand Your Shoulder Pain
Shoulders are used in many daily activities. Working, household chores, and even playing the guitar are activities that can put a strain on your shoulders. Our shoulders often support the weight of our bodies, so putting extra stress or tension on these muscles and joints can become problematic over time. Shoulder pain is a common condition that can be caused by a variety of factors. If you have shoulder pain, it's important to understand what causes this and how to treat it.
What are shoulders made of?
The shoulders are made up of three bones: the clavicle (collarbone), scapula (shoulder blade), and humerus (upper arm bone). The ligaments that connect these bones together are called the rotator cuff muscles. The rotator cuff muscles help support the shoulder joint and stabilize it during movement.
The rotator cuff muscles help lift your arm to the side or overhead. The shoulder is also unique because it can generate more force than any other joint in your body—it's what lets us move furniture, throw balls, and otherwise have a blast with our friends.
This incredible functionality comes at a price, and that price is a pain when something goes wrong. When one of these muscles is injured or weak, your ability to fully lift your arm may be limited. This may result in pain and weakness in your shoulder joint.
While it varies from person to person, we all experience varying degrees of shoulder pain. Whether it's from overuse, a bad fall you took, or just being put under stress, there are ways to reduce or manage the pain without surgery.
What causes shoulder pain?
A number of factors can cause shoulder pain. Here are some of the most common causes:
Injuries to the shoulder. Shoulder injuries, such as those caused by sports, falls and other accidents, are one of the most common causes of shoulder pain. The injury may lead to inflammation and stiffness in the joint.
Joint arthritis. Arthritis is the most common cause of chronic pain in older adults, according to the Arthritis Foundation. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative type of joint disease that occurs when cartilage wears away over time, causing bones to rub against each other. Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder that causes inflammation in joints throughout the body.
Rotator cuff tears. Tears to this group of four muscles and tendons in your shoulder can cause significant pain and reduce mobility in your arm. Shoulder impingement syndrome occurs when tendons or bursa tissue rub against bone or other tissues around your shoulder joint. Inflammation from bursitis also may cause pain and stiffness in your shoulder joint.
In many cases, shoulder pain is due to another condition that needs treatment first. For example, if you have carpal tunnel syndrome in your wrist but also experience shoulder pain, it may be due to carpal tunnel syndrome in the shoulder. If you have shoulder pain along with knee or back problems, you could also have arthritis in those joints. In these situations, non-surgical treatment options can help alleviate your symptoms while getting appropriate diagnoses and treating other conditions at the same time.
Know When to Seek Medical Attention
If your shoulder pain is getting worse or not improving after two weeks of rest or self-care treatments, then it's time to see a pain doctor. The same goes if your shoulder is swollen or red, if you notice bruising in the area or if you have trouble moving your arm out to the side or behind your back. Shoulder pain can also be a sign of many different health problems. It may be due to injury, arthritis, or even a pinched nerve in the neck. If any of these symptoms occur suddenly without warning or if you have trouble lifting objects over five pounds with one arm (10 pounds total), then it's important for you to see a pain specialist immediately.
Here are some reasons why:
Pain that interferes with daily activities is not normal and needs attention.
Pain that is not getting better after two weeks requires medical attention.
Avoiding treatment may lead to further complications down the line like nerve damage and arthritis.
Why getting a proper diagnosis important?
It's important for patients to work with a shoulder specialist that can diagnose their specific injury, whether it's arthritis, bursitis, or another condition. Not all shoulder pain is the same, and not all shoulder injuries require the same treatment. Even if you have rotator cuff disease, there are many treatment options available besides surgery. Some people have been able to alleviate their pain naturally by changing their lifestyle, such as adjusting their diet or getting more exercise.
Non-surgical Shoulder Pain Relief Option at a Glance
If you're suffering from shoulder pain, you've likely at some point had someone suggest that you need a surgical procedure. While surgery can provide relief for a wide range of shoulder problems, it is not always the best option. Sometimes, instead of surgery, other treatment options that can relieve your pain and help you regain the full range of motion in your shoulder. By taking advantage of the healing powers of your own body, you can work with our providers to heal your shoulder without drugs or surgery and get back to your everyday life as quickly as possible.
What are the options for non-surgical treatment?
One such option is chiropractic care. Chiropractors are medical professionals who specialize in treating the misalignment of the spinal column and the musculoskeletal system. They use manual manipulation and other procedures to correct these misalignments and relieve pain and other symptoms.
At our practice, we also offer medical massage, which can help reduce inflammation in your muscles as well as increase blood flow to injured parts of your body to speed up their healing process.
Physical rehabilitation is one of the most common types of non-surgical treatment for shoulder injuries and conditions. During this process, your pain doctor will work with you to strengthen your muscles and improve their flexibility in order to reduce your pain level and improve mobility.
Non-surgical treatment options such as physical therapy and exercise can be effective treatments for many of the symptoms associated with shoulder pain, including difficulty moving and reduced mobility.
Physical therapy includes a number of exercises that focus on improving strength, flexibility, and coordination. A physical therapist will work with you directly to develop an exercise plan that is tailored to your specific needs and goals. By working closely with a physical therapist, you can expect to see an improved range of motion and decreased pain in just a few weeks.
Exercise is another great way to reduce the symptoms associated with shoulder pain. There are a number of exercises designed specifically for strengthening the shoulders, including push-ups and planks. These exercises are simple and easy to perform at home or at the office during breaks or lunchtime. By incorporating these exercises into your routine, you can improve muscle strength and endurance without needing surgery or prescription medication.
Also, another type of non-surgical treatment that has become increasingly popular over the last decade is minimally invasive procedures. Steroids are injected directly into the inflamed area to reduce inflammation and ease the pain. This procedure can be performed in our office or an outpatient center, depending on the severity of your condition. Nerve blocks use local anesthesia to numb a specific nerve pathway, which relieves pain caused by damaged nerves in your body.
For more information on how they work and how they can be tailored to treat your specific condition, contact us today!
How to determine the best treatment option?
The first step in treating shoulder pain is identifying the underlying cause of the problem. A specialist will perform an examination and ask questions about your medical history, including any previous surgeries or injuries, as well as any medications you're taking or allergies you may have. Once we identify the cause of your shoulder pain, we'll recommend an appropriate treatment plan based on your individual needs.
The Benefits of Choosing Non-surgical Shoulder Pain Relief
Non-surgical shoulder pain relief is the most common option for patients who want a long-term solution for their shoulder pain. One of the main benefits of choosing non-surgical options for your shoulder pain is that you will not have to undergo any invasive procedures. Many people feel that having surgery is their only option for treating their condition, but this may not be true for everyone.
Another benefit of choosing non-surgical methods over surgery is that they do not have any side effects associated with them. Surgery always comes with some type of risk involved, even if it is minor, which can cause complications in some patients later on down the road if they do not take care of themselves properly after surgery occurs. Surgery also takes time off from work or school while healing occurs, which can be very inconvenient if you have a job or other obligations to take care of at home while recovering.
Here are some of the many benefits of choosing non-surgical treatment methods for your shoulder pain:
Faster recovery time
Safe and effective
Decreased risk of infection
Recovery After Non-surgical Shoulder Pain Relief
Recovery times vary according to the severity of your condition and other factors such as age and overall health. The usual recovery time after non-surgical shoulder pain relief is two to four weeks, but it can be longer if you have a severe injury that requires a more treatment or if your body does not heal quickly.
If you have a mild injury, it should take about two weeks for your shoulder to get back its full range of motion (ROM) and strength. In some cases, this will happen sooner than expected since most people find that their ROM improves significantly within just a few days after treatment begins. If you have an injury that requires more intensive therapy and physical therapy exercises, then you may need up to six weeks or even longer before your pain goes away completely.
Take Care of Your Shoulder Before it Becomes Severe
When you experience shoulder pain, it cannot be easy to ignore. The first step should always be to find a medical professional you can trust to help you resolve the issue at hand. But if your shoulder pain is affecting your livelihood and enjoyment of life, consider an innovative non-surgical option for treatment. But, first and foremost, remember that you're not alone in dealing with this problem. The experience of trying to manage shoulder pain isn't pleasant, but if anything we recommend above helps you feel better and more comfortable in the future, we hope that's something that will make your life more enjoyable. Contact All Of Pain New York pain management center today for more information!