Have you ever woken up to know that any movement in your shoulder hurts? And it is difficult to carry out your daily life activities because of the pain you feel in the shoulder and the arm even on the slightest movement? You might be facing a frozen shoulder.
Frozen shoulder is a medical condition that causes stiffness and pain in the shoulder joint. If not diagnosed or treated, the condition becomes worse with time. Frozen shoulder intensifies with time, developing slowly. For some people, the pain intensifies at night, disturbing the sleep routines. There are 3 stages of frozen shoulder.
The first stage is the painful stage. It is painful to move the shoulder. The range of shoulder movement area starts decreasing. When it reaches the frozen stage, pain lessens, but the shoulder becomes stiff, further reducing the shoulder movement range. The third stage is the thawing stage, when the shoulder joint gets better with treatment, the range of motion increases and the shoulder feels pain free.
The shoulder joint is covered with connective tissues that help in shoulder movement. When a person experiences frozen shoulder, it means that connective tissue has thickened, thus causing difficulties in moving the shoulder.
The reasons behind getting frozen shoulder are yet unknown. Some factors do increase the risk. According to research, women are more susceptible to get frozen shoulder. So are people who are older than 40 years. Immobility of the shoulder due to a broken arm or due to recovering from some sort of surgery may increase the risk of frozen shoulder. Diabetic patients, TB patients, heart patients or Parkinson’s patients have an increased risk of developing frozen shoulder.
Doctors can make you perform certain actions to detect frozen shoulder. These activities involve moving the shoulder in different ways. A frozen shoulder patient will face difficulty and pain in raising hands straight up in the air, trying to touch the opposite shoulder across the shoulder, or trying to touch the opposite shoulder blade by placing the hand behind near the small of your back. Along with the motion tests, doctors may recommend getting an X-ray or an MRI.
Frozen shoulder is treated with physiotherapy and stretching exercises. Pain relief medication can help get rid of the pain. In some cases, surgery is recommended. Hot or cold compresses may also relieve the pain. You should continue using the frozen shoulder as much the pain and movement range allows, otherwise, the joint will become more painful.