3 Tips For Managing An Inflamed Shoulder
Ice is the best form of temperature therapy when you have shoulder inflammation to help reduce pain and swelling. If you have underlying arthritis causing inflammation or arthritis in addition to another shoulder condition, it can be difficult to tolerate cold. Consider alternating between heat and ice if the cold causes your shoulder joint to ache. You want to minimize your use of heat because it can cause additional swelling. If you are not already using over-the-counter anti-inflammatory pain relievers, use them to help you better tolerate cold therapy. You can also try using a cool, moist towel instead of ice.
Be Careful While Sleeping
When your shoulder is already irritated, it is easy to exacerbate the problem while you are sleeping. Do not sleep directly on the affected shoulder, even if you have a remission in pain and inflammation. You can easily re-aggravate the problem by sleeping on your affected shoulder. If you sleep on your back, try placing a fluffy pillow under your shoulder to help support and cradle your shoulder. You want to avoid using any pillow that offers firm support, since it can add more pressure on your shoulder. Consider stacking your pillows to prop up your upper body, which can also reduce pressure on your shoulder as you sleep.
Try Range Of Motion Exercises
Perform movements of your shoulder that do not cause pain to avoid stiffness. Although it can be tempting to keep your shoulder completely immobilized, if your shoulder becomes stiff, you will experience significantly more pain when you try to move your shoulder. You do not need to rotate your shoulder completely to prevent stiffness.
If possible, keep your arm at your side or in a comfortable position and slowly roll your shoulder in a circular motion. Roll your shoulder forward and backward for a few seconds several times throughout the day. You can also try raising your arm as long as it does not cause pain. Gently raise your arm away from your body and bring it back beside you. Next try raising your arm to the front and then toward the back.
You can manage mild to moderate episodes of shoulder inflammation with simple techniques. Focus on reducing pain, inflammation and swelling, while keeping stiffness at bay.