What Is Shoulder Impingement & How a Chiropractor Can Help

Chiropractic Therapy Joint Pain Medical Conditions / May 12, 2022
A male patient with his left arm crossed over his body as he is being examined by a doctor.

What is shoulder impingement? It’s a painful condition that not many have heard of, but if you’re suffering from shoulder pain, this may be the cause. It’s one of the most common culprits of pain in the area, and treatment options are available. When looking at how to fix shoulder impingement, it’s essential to seek professional care to ensure you don’t further aggravate the pain. An experienced chiropractor can help provide shoulder pain relief through various treatment methods, enabling you to overcome the condition and get back to daily life.

At ChiroCare of Florida, we treat a wide variety of conditions and injuries, including shoulder impingement. With ten offices throughout South Florida and over 100 years of experience combined, we’re the chiropractors that countless residents turn to when experiencing muscular-skeletal pain. If you’re looking for shoulder pain relief, contact us today to schedule an appointment.

What Is Shoulder Impingement?

Shoulder impingement syndrome can cause pain in the shoulder, neck, and arm. The discomfort generally worsens when lifting heavy objects or extending your arm to reach for something. The pain can be consistent and present all the time, or you may feel it only during activity.

The most common symptoms associated with the condition include a limited range of motion in your shoulder or arm, muscle weakness in the area, tenderness, or stiffness in your shoulder. The pain may impact your ability to sleep on the side of the affected shoulder. If you’re an athlete, this can significantly impact your performance and can even keep you on the bench until you find the shoulder pain relief you’re seeking.

You may hear the condition called “swimmer’s shoulder,” as those who swim often are more likely to experience joint capsule damage associated with shoulder impingement. The syndrome occurs due to overuse of the shoulder joint when the tendon or connective tissue continuously rubs against the bone in your shoulder blade.

How Does Shoulder Impingement Happen?

While swimmers frequently experience shoulder impingement, they’re not the only individuals susceptible to the condition. Other athletes, such as baseball players, basketball players, and golfers, are likely to seek shoulder pain relief due to the syndrome as well. Other risk factors include age, prior injury to the area, or the occurrence of bone spurs.

Shoulder impingement is not an injury that occurs all at once. Instead, the condition develops over time as you conduct repetitive movements of the joint, such as pitching a ball or circling your arm over your head as you swim through the pool. Other activities that require heavy shoulder use, such as manual labor, can also contribute to the condition.

As the connective tissue in your shoulder rubs against your shoulder blade, the tissue becomes irritated and inflamed. During repetitive motions, the tendon in your shoulder may pinch as it moves between the top of the upper arm and the tip of your shoulder, which causes the condition.

You’re likely to feel pain along the back of your shoulder that worsens over time, particularly if you continue to participate in the activity that causes swimmer’s shoulder in the first place. You may have difficulty reaching above your head or extending your arm straight out from your body.

Luckily, there are effective ways to get the shoulder pain relief you’re looking for. Seeking treatment can help you recover more quickly and get back to doing the things you love.

How a Chiropractor Can Help

Chiropractors are experts who specialize in the muscular-skeletal system of the human body. This means they can help treat conditions associated with muscles, tendons, ligaments, and bones. If you’re struggling with shoulder impingement syndrome, seek a chiropractic evaluation today. There is relief available.

Numerous chiropractic treatment methods can help with the pain you’re experiencing and speed up recovery time. From traditional methods like chiropractic adjustments to instrument-assisted treatments such as ultrasound therapy and physical rehabilitation, there are many ways to help the injury heal.

Some treatments specifically target soft tissue in the area, including laser therapy, electrical stimulation (E-stim), and the Graston Technique. These methods will help resolve the inflammation and pain in your shoulder tendon, resulting in less pain over time. Treatment can take place over weeks or months as your body slowly heals and returns to a healthy state.

Additionally, chiropractors can help with immediate pain relief. Treatments such as cryogenic therapy, which uses freezing temperatures, can help with short-term shoulder pain relief. Other relief options include physical therapy and even techniques such as massage therapy and acupuncture. With so many chiropractic treatment options available for shoulder impingement, your chiropractor will help develop a custom treatment plan that’s right for you.

At-Home Treatment Tips for Pain Relief and Recovery

While in-office visits will certainly help with shoulder pain relief, there are things that you can do at home to help with the recovery process, too. During your initial consultations, your chiropractor will review light exercises you can do in-between visits that can decrease total recovery time. These exercises may include light stretching to strengthen the joint and tendon.

Additionally, your chiropractor may suggest options such as over-the-counter pain medication, rest, or advise you to apply hot or cold compresses to the area. When choosing an over-the-counter medication, it’s best to look for those that specifically address inflammation, such as aspirin or ibuprofen. Never begin a medication regimen without first speaking with your doctor.

Schedule an Appointment Today

Now that you have the answer to “what is shoulder impingement?” and know that there are options available for shoulder pain relief, the next step is to schedule an appointment with a chiropractor to develop an individualized treatment plan. At the appointment, we’ll review how to fix shoulder impingement with a recommended course of therapies.

Find a ChiroCare of Florida location near you today and give us a call. Our chiropractors are standing by to help you find the shoulder pain relief you deserve. Don’t suffer through the pain any longer. We’re here to help.

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