If your job requires you to lift, reach, or carry objects, you’re also more likely to experience shoulder pain. Without early intervention and treatment, shoulder pain can prevent you from routine activities like playing with the kids, doing yard work, or cleaning. At South Bay Wellness Center in San Jose, California, Jay Ebadat, DC, treats shoulder pain using holistic, conservative measures. To schedule an appointment, book a consultation online, or call the office today.
Shoulder Pain Q&A
What is shoulder pain?
Shoulder pain refers to any stiffness, aching, or general discomfort that affects one (or both) shoulder joints.
The shoulder is the most flexible joint in your entire body. It consists of three bones –– the clavicle, scapula, and humerus. A supportive layer of cartilage surrounds these bones, acting as a cushion. Four tendons, known as rotator cuffs, allow your shoulder to move up, down, forward, and backward.
What are some common causes of shoulder pain?
Though your shoulders are incredibly tough, they aren’t invincible. Manual labor, repetitive movements, and playing sports can all contribute to shoulder problems.
The leading cause of shoulder pain is rotator cuff tendinitis. This overuse injury occurs due to swollen tendons. Other ailments that may cause shoulder pain include:
- Frozen shoulder
- Bone spurs
- Pinched nerves
- Dislocated shoulder
- Spinal cord injuries
- Torn rotator cuff
You might also experience shoulder pain if you’re living with a chronic musculoskeletal condition like arthritis.
How is shoulder pain diagnosed?
At South Bay Wellness Center, Dr. Ebadat diagnoses shoulder pain by reviewing your health history and conducting a comprehensive physical exam. During the exam, Dr. Ebadat gently presses on your shoulder looking for areas of swelling or tenderness. He also has you perform range-of-motion exercises to test your shoulder’s strength and joint stability.
If these measures don’t provide enough insight into the cause of your shoulder pain, he orders imaging tests, like X-rays or ultrasound. These measures provide detailed pictures of your shoulder joint which can assist in diagnosis.
Lastly, Dr. Ebadat asks a series of questions about your symptoms, including whether the pain affects one shoulder or both; if the pain keeps you up at night; and if the pain is sharp or a dull ache. Answer these questions honestly, as your responses help guide treatment.
How is shoulder pain treated?
Whenever possible, Dr. Ebadat recommends conservative, holistic treatments to manage shoulder pain. Early on, he usually suggests healthy lifestyle changes, such as rest, ice, compression, and elevation (the RICE protocol). You might also benefit from light stretching or at-home exercises to strengthen your shoulder joint.
If your shoulder pain persists or gets worse, Dr. Ebadat might recommend:
- Cold laser therapy
- Kinesio taping
- Rehabilitation exercise
- Neck decompression
- Ergonomics training
Ultimately, the goal of treatment is to ease pain, improve mobility, and encourage your body’s natural healing process. Depending on the severity of your symptoms, you might benefit from one type of treatment or a combination of several.
Don’t let shoulder pain keep you from participating in your favorite activities. Schedule an appointment at South Bay Wellness Center. Book a consultation online, or call the office and speak with a friendly staff member.