Have you been suffering from worsening shoulder pain? Pain that may have started as “an ache” and has since progressed to increased pain and stiffness? Has this pain kept you from sleeping or dressing or grooming? Did this pain and stiffness come “out of nowhere”? If so, you may have something known as “Frozen Shoulder”.
Frozen shoulder, or Adhesive Capsulitis, is a painful condition that is most commonly found in females between the ages of 45-65 and often happens for no known reason. Other factors that may increase the likelihood of suffering from frozen shoulder include a history of diabetes or thyroid disease. While this part of the population is more likely to get frozen shoulder, this does not mean they are the only ones who can get it (in other words, guys, you can get this too).
How will you know if you have frozen shoulder?
You may not know right away. Your pain may start out feeling like shoulder “impingement”, or pain when reaching overhead. This may then progress to worsening pain, stiffness and pain while sleeping at night as well as pain and difficulty reaching behind your head and back. If this persists for several months, it may be very likely that you have frozen shoulder.
Can anything be done to help frozen shoulder?
Absolutely. Many people suffering from frozen shoulder have returned to all of their favorite activities without limitation. Recovering from frozen shoulder can take many months, but with the help of a qualified physical therapist, you can return to all of your favorite activities. Additionally, research supports the use of cortisone injections in addition to physical therapy to help with pain relief and mobility.
If you believe you may have frozen shoulder, keep using your shoulder during daily activities, apply heat as needed and find a qualified physical therapist to help guide you along the way. The recovery can be long but well worth it in the end.