Health

Dos And Don’ts For Treating Frozen Shoulder

A frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a condition that causes stiffness, pain, and reduced range of motion in the shoulder. The pain can be debilitating and often make simple activities like picking something from a shelf, taking your wallet from the back pocket, or combing your hair painful. A frozen shoulder develops gradually and can take a long time to heal. While the exact cause is unclear, knowing the dos and don’ts for treating a frozen shoulder can help speed up recovery and restore range of motion.  This article lists the dos and don’ts to help guide your recovery journey.

Do: Consult Your Doctor

If you suspect that you have a frozen shoulder, your first step is to seek help from your doctor. Do not self-diagnose or self-treat, as this can make the situation worse. Your doctor will begin your diagnosis by conducting a physical examination to evaluate your shoulder’s range of motion. They will move your arm at different angles to check the passive range of motion. They might also order an X-ray to rule out underlying conditions like arthritis.

Don’t: Skip Your Physical Therapy Sessions

After the examination, your doctor will recommend a treatment plan for you and exercises to do at home. Part of your treatment plan may also include weekly or biweekly physical therapy. Never skip your routine therapy, as it’s meant to teach you exercises that stretch the joint capsule and track your progress. The first few sessions are critical as they determine which exercises work best based on your condition.

Do: Regularly Use Your Affected Arm

Resting or keeping your arm inactive won’t make your healing process more manageable. Resting the arm for too long may worsen the condition. Instead, begin performing simple, gentle exercises that don’t cause too much pain. Your therapist can guide you on how to do them by yourself at home. Again, don’t overdo it. Always consult your doctor before taking any strenuous exercises.

Don’t: Engage in Activities that Cause Pain

Keeping your shoulder mobile is one thing, and engaging in activities that cause pain is another. Avoid activities that jar, jerk or pull your shoulders. These movements can make healing difficult as they put a strain on your muscles. The tendons in your arm will be forced to work harder, leading to tendonitis. If you feel you want to exercise more, you can check what you can do online and learn more about frozen shoulder exercises. Frozen shoulder treatment is a process that requires time. Don’t rush it.

Do: Pay Attention to Your Sleeping Position and Posture

Depending on the cause of your frozen shoulder, you might want to reconsider your sleeping position and posture. During the first or freezing stage, you experience the most pain, which hinders proper sleep or rest. Find a less painful sleeping position to help you sleep and rest adequately. You can put a small soft pillow under your affected arm with your hand resting on your stomach. If you sleep on your side, avoid sleeping on the affected shoulder. Avoid slumping or slouching and maintain an upright posture when standing or sitting.

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