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  • Writer's pictureDr. Keith McGahey

Can A Chiropractor Help With Shoulder Pain?

The short answer is yes, absolutely! Shoulder pain is a fairly common complaint, especially with people who are active. Athletes are a great example. Playing sports can put a lot of strain on your shoulders, particularly with throwing and contact sorts. Over time that repetitive wear and tear can lead to shoulder pain and stiffness, pinched nerve, or a more serious condition.

A man with shoulder pain holding his shoulder

But you don’t need to be an athlete to have shoulder pain. Things like poor posture, working physical labor, using a computer, or performing repetitive tasks with your arms and hands can lead to shoulder pain as well. Some individuals may require surgery or some other intervention for their condition. But for many, Chiropractic can be very helpful in reducing pain, and improving shoulder mobility and ranges of motion. Combing chiropractic with soft tissue techniques like Active Release and Graston Technique can help improve those results even more.


If you suffer from shoulder pain, consider scheduling an appointment with Dr. McGahey. He's been helping people with shoulder pain just like you for over 25 years. Chances are he can help you too.


Common Causes Of Shoulder Pain

Repetitive use (overuse) is the most common cause of shoulder pain. Think of activities like golf, tennis or baseball. All of these activities involve swinging the arms and shoulders. These explosive movements put a great deal of strain on the shoulders. And over time that strain can lead to shoulder pain, stiffness, or even a more serious injury like a tear or pinched nerve.


People whose work involves repetitive arm movements are also at risk of shoulder pain. For example, sitting at a screen all day, or working physical labor, can put a tremendous amount of strain on your shoulders. And although the work may not be physically taxing, the repetitive nature of doing those things is. Ask anyone who pushes a mouse around all day. If you have poor posture, that can create more strain still.


Shoulder Pain In Athletes

Any sport or activity that involves repetitive movements of the arms is at risk for shoulder pain. Explosive movements like throwing, swinging, and lifting put strain on the rotator cuff, a group of 4 muscles that move and stabilize the shoulder joint. That strain can eventually cause tiny little tears in the muscles and tendons of the rotator cuff.


In response to those tiny tears, the body produces scar tissue and adhesions. This can cause pain, stiffness, weakness and a loss of athletic performance. Without proper treatment, more serious injury can occur. That includes tears of the muscles and tendons of the rotator cuff, or the capsule around the shoulder joint.


Shoulder Pain In Non-Athletes

You don’t have to play sports to have shoulder pain. In fact, most of the shoulder pain I see in my practice is from non-sports activity. Poor posture, computer use, physical work, and leisure activities can all lead to shoulder pain. These activities can all put strain on the shoulder and rotator cuff, which can eventually lead to overuse injury. If that overuse injury becomes chronic, it can lead to more serious shoulder conditions.


Symptoms Of Shoulder Overuse Injury

Shoulder strain or overuse often results in pain around the shoulder. Pain may spread into the upper arm, sometimes as far down as the elbow. You may also experience stiffness in your shoulder joint. Arm movement may be painful. Especially with movements like lifting or throwing, putting on a shirt or coat, or even putting on your seat belt.


Symptoms of shoulder strain can mild in the beginning, but can increase in severity with continued use. You may also have pain around your shoulder blade, the bone that the rotator cuff muscles attach to. Lying on the affected side may be painful enough to interfere with sleep. It can also make your shoulder ache, and that ache can spread into your arm. A more serious shoulder injury may result in these same symptoms, but much more quickly.


Effective Treatment For Shoulder Pain

Shoulder pain treatment involves a few simple objectives. Break up scar tissue and adhesions in the muscles and ligaments around the shoulder. Work to return normal function to the muscles in the shoulder, neck and upper back. And restore normal motion to the joints of the spine and shoulder.


Whether you’re an athlete, work hard, play hard, or spend your days sitting at a computer, chiropractic can help. Chiropractors are joint experts, and shoulder joints are no exception. Combining Chiropractic with therapies like Active Release and Graston Technique can provide even faster relief of shoulder pain. In fact, people often start to feel relief in just a few visits.


What Are You Waiting For?

If you've been suffering from with shoulder pain, relief may be just around the corner. If left untreated, your shoulder pain may develop into a more serious condition. Dr. McGahey can help you get to the source of the problem and eliminate your shoulder pain as quickly as possible.


Get Help Now

No referral is necessary, and same day appointments are available. Chiropractic is covered by insurance, and Dr. McGahey is a preferred provider with most insurance plans. Don’t let shoulder pain get in the way of what you love. Schedule your visit now and start feeling better today!

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