The shoulder is the most mobile joint in the human body, which makes it more prone to pain. There are many causes of shoulder pain, but most cases are relatively short-lived. Many cases of shoulder pain aren’t caused by anything serious and will ease within two weeks. Here are four simple exercises and six self-help tips that should help. If pain doesn’t improve after about two weeks, speak to your doctor.
1 – Shoulder stretch
Stand and raise your shoulders. Hold for 5 seconds. Squeeze your shoulder blades back and hold for 5 seconds. Pull your shoulder blades downward and hold for 5 seconds. Relax and repeat ten times.
2 – Door lean
Stand in a doorway with your arms (both) on the wall slightly above your head. Slowly lean forward until you feel a stretch in the front of your shoulders. Hold for 15-30 seconds. Repeat three times. Avoid this exercise if you have shoulder impingement.
3 – Door press
Bend your elbow at a 90-degree angle while standing in a doorway. Now, press the top side of your hand against the door frame. Hold for five seconds and repeat ten times. Replicate the whole exercise using the opposite arm. Start with three sets each and slowly build up.
4 – Pendulum exercise
Stand with your good hand resting on a chair. Let your other arm hang down and try to swing it gently backward and forward and in a circular motion. Repeat about five times. Try this 2-3 times a day.
Other things to keep in mind
- Use an ice pack. You can also rub anti inflammatory cream directly onto the painful area.
- Learn how to protect your shoulder joints and be aware of your posture. Don’t sit leaning forward with your arm held tightly by your side. When sitting, keep a pillow behind your lower back with your arm supported on a cushion on your lap.
- Strike a balance between rest and activity to prevent the shoulder from stiffening.
- While lifting objects, reduce the strain or pull on your shoulder. Keep your elbow bent and in front of your body and your palm facing the ceiling.
- Painkiller medication can have side effects. So, always read the label carefully or consult your doctor. Don’t consume ibuprofen or aspirin if you’re pregnant or have asthma, indigestion, or an ulcer.
- If your shoulder pain is persisting and affecting your activity, consult a physical therapist. Physical therapy can help you manage shoulder pain and improve its strength and flexibility.