70% of people will experience shoulder pain at some point in their life. The shoulder is the most mobile joint in the body. As a ball and socket joint, the shoulder allows for backward, forward, sideways, and rotating movements. Having high mobility in the shoulder joint decreases the joint’s stability, which increases the likelihood of injury. The shoulder comprises the clavicle, the scapula, and the humerus bones. The group of muscles, tendons, and ligaments that help to stabilize the shoulder joint is called the rotator cuff. The majority of shoulder issues involve the rotator cuff.
If you are experiencing shoulder pain, it is imperative to discover the source of the issue in order to resolve it. The most common cause of shoulder pain is poor posture. Other causes of shoulder injuries include repetitive movements, stress, osteoarthritis, and trauma. If your shoulder pain is due to a joint misalignment, the symptoms will persist until the misalignment is corrected. Chiropractors specialize in resolving joint misalignments. It is also important to note that a misalignment of the shoulder joint can cause shoulder pain, but misalignments in the cervical and thoracic spine can be the source of the issue. The muscles around the spine will tighten to protect the misaligned joint in the neck or back and can impact the shoulder joint’s structure as well.
Furthermore, the nerves that exit the neck and upper back control the healing and function of the shoulder joint. If spinal misalignments cause shoulder pain, it can be resolved by addressing the misalignments in the spine. Finding the root cause of your shoulder pain is essential to manage and resolve your shoulder pain properly.
$99 New Patient Shoulder Pain Treatment Special
Exam includes in-depth whole-body analysis with provider, posture pictures and insight nervous system scans (provided if necessary). Consultation & plan of action will help you understand your care options.
How Our Shoulder Pain Treatment Plan Works
1. Be Heard
Quality time with a health professional, so you can be truly heard and understood, isn’t all that common. We understand that. This is why, on your first visit, you will meet with one of our doctors and share your health concerns and struggles so we can understand exactly why you are here and what you want to achieve. The doctor will determine what testing is necessary to find the source of your health concerns and answer the biggest question of all: Can Chiropractic Care Help?
2. Discover How We Can Help You
Every new patient should feel like they are making the right decision for their health. This is why our doctors explain what they are looking for in the testing, so our patients know exactly what is going on, instead of just being a bystander. We will share everything we discover from your testing and exams, including if we can help you. In the unfortunate event that we cannot help, our doctors will provide any additional resources they feel would be appropriate to assist you.
3. Achieve Your Health Goals Together
Whether you just want to be out of pain, or you want to get back to golfing without limitations, or you are desperate to get a restful night’s sleep, we will be with you every step of the way. We’ll achieve your goals
How We Treat Shoulder Pain in West Omaha, NE
Comprehensive Consultation and Exam
Chiropractors are specifically trained to detect and correct misalignments in the spine and other joints of the body. When a patient presents with shoulder pain, the chiropractor’s goal is to determine the source of the symptoms. In our office, the doctor assesses the shoulder joint as well as the entire spine. This is because joint misalignments in the cervical and thoracic spine often contribute to shoulder pain and problems.
When you visit our office, the doctor will have a consultation with you to get a complete health history, focusing on events that may be the source of your health concerns, as well as gathering a timeline of the shoulder pain symptoms you are experiencing. The doctor will listen to how your health concerns impact your ability to live your life the way you want. They will then perform specific chiropractic and functional tests to determine the root cause of your shoulder pain. Testing may include assessing range of motion, postural analysis, spinal palpation, and digital x-rays. The doctor needs to see exactly what is going on in both the spine and the shoulder joints to determine the source of your shoulder pain.
Specific Chiropractic Care
After taking time to analyze the test results, the doctor will be able to meet with you to report what they found and explain how chiropractic care at Family First Chiropractic will be able to help. You and the doctor will agree on a plan of action which may include chiropractic adjustments and home exercises to address your shoulder pain.
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Common Causes of Shoulder Pain
Frozen Shoulder, also called adhesive capsulitis, involves stiffness and pain in the shoulder joint. Symptoms typically begin slowly, then get worse. The resolution of symptoms occurs gradually, usually taking one to three years for pain and symptoms to completely resolve. Frozen Shoulder occurs in about 2% of all adults, most often striking those between the ages of 40 and 60. This condition is also seen in women more often than men, although the reason for this is unknown. Keeping a shoulder still for a long period increases the risk of developing Frozen Shoulder. One common reason for keeping a shoulder immobile is due to healing after having surgery or breaking an arm.
When utilizing chiropractic care to address symptoms of Frozen Shoulder, treatment involves range-of-motion exercises and specific adjustments to the humeral head and the surrounding joints.
A tendon is a cord that connects a muscle to a bone. Tendonitis is a result of inflammation in the tendon.
Generally, tendonitis is one of two types:
Acute – the result of a recent injury, often caused by repetitive motion. Excessive ball throwing or other overhead activities during work or sport can lead to acute tendinitis.
Chronic – an ongoing issue with inflammation in the tendon. Degenerative diseases like arthritis or repetitive wear and tear due to age can lead to chronic tendonitis.
The four rotator cuff tendons and one of the biceps tendons are most commonly involved in shoulder pain due to tendonitis. The rotator cuff comprises four small muscles and their associated tendons that cover the head of your upper arm bone and keep it in the shoulder socket. Your rotator cuff helps provide shoulder motion and stability. Chiropractic adjustments correcting subluxations of the shoulder complex have been shown to reduce the inflammatory conditions of the tendons involved in shoulder tendonitis.
Bursae are small, fluid-filled sacs that are a part of joints throughout the body, including the shoulder. They act as cushions between bones and the overlying soft tissues and help reduce friction between the gliding muscles and the bone.
Excessive use of the shoulder can lead to inflammation and swelling of the bursa between the rotator cuff and part of the shoulder blade, known as the acromion. The result is a condition known as subacromial bursitis.
Bursitis often occurs concurrently with rotator cuff tendonitis. This results in the many tissues in the shoulder becoming inflamed and painful. When this happens, activities of daily living, such as combing your hair or getting dressed, may become difficult when shoulder movement is restricted due to pain.
Shoulder impingement occurs when the top of the shoulder blade, also known as the acromion, puts pressure on the underlying soft tissues when the arm is lifted away from the body. As the arm is raised, the acromion rubs or impinges on the rotator cuff tendons and bursa. This can lead to bursitis and tendonitis, causing shoulder pain and limiting shoulder movement. Shoulder impingement can also include the musculature of the rotator cuff. The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that surround the shoulder joint, keeping the head of the upper arm bone firmly within the shoulder’s shallow socket. A rotator cuff injury often causes a dull ache in the shoulder that worsens at night.
Rotator cuff injuries are common and increase with age. These injuries may occur earlier in people with jobs requiring repeatedly performing overhead motions, such as painters and carpenters.
Range of motion exercises can improve flexibility and strength of the muscles surrounding the shoulder joint. For many people with rotator cuff problems, these exercises are all that is needed to manage their symptoms. However, chiropractic adjustments can alleviate the shoulder pain symptoms sooner and allow the shoulder complex to heal faster. It is important to note that if the root cause of the shoulder impingement is a misalignment of the shoulder joint or correlating spinal bones, the only way to fully correct the problem is with chiropractic adjustments.
Shoulder instability occurs when the head of the upper arm bone is forced out of the shoulder socket. This can happen due to a sudden injury or overuse of the shoulder joint.
Shoulder dislocations can be partial or complete. A partial shoulder dislocation is when the ball of the upper arm comes partially out of the socket. This type of injury is also called a subluxation of the shoulder joint. A complete shoulder dislocation means the ball comes all the way out of the socket.
Once the ligaments, tendons, and muscles around the shoulder become loose or torn, dislocations can occur repeatedly. Recurring dislocations, which may be partial or complete, cause pain and unsteadiness when you raise your arm or move it away from your body. Repeated episodes of subluxations or dislocations lead to an increased risk of developing arthritis in the joint.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can chiropractors help with shoulder pain?
Yes! A chiropractor is a great person to turn to for shoulder-related pain. Although taking medications can give you short-term relief when you have shoulder pain, medicines will not address the cause of your shoulder pain. A chiropractic evaluation ensures that your body and musculoskeletal system are cared for by locating the source of your shoulder pain. A combination of chiropractic adjustments and corrective exercises will work together to correct the cause of your shoulder pain.
What is the best exercise for shoulder pain?
You can do several stretches and exercises to loosen the muscle tension on your shoulders. View the video HERE for a demonstration of specific exercises. You should always consult a health professional to ensure the exercises are appropriate for your shoulder injury or condition. Consistency with a home exercise routine will help you get the most relief from your shoulder pain. Stretches and exercises will become easier over time as your injury heals.
What can cause shoulder pain without any injury?
Gradual overuse, improper posture, and preexisting conditions, such as infection, explain noninjury-related shoulder pain. Utilizing heavy backpacks or purses and even improperly fitting bra straps can contribute to unknown causes of shoulder pain.
What does a pinched nerve in the shoulder feel like?
Pinched nerve signs and symptoms can include:
- Numbness or decreased sensation in the area supplied by the nerve
- Sharp, aching, or burning pain that may radiate outward
- Tingling or “pins and needles” sensations (paresthesia)
- Muscle weakness in the affected area
- Frequent feeling that an arm or hand has “fallen asleep”