Frozen shoulder is a common symptom. It happens when the patient does not move the shoulders for a long period of time or has an accident in the shoulder area. It is found in women more than men, more in diabetes patients and people of 40 years old and over. The real cause of frozen should has not yet been confirmed but physicians speculate it is caused by inflammation on the shoulder ligaments, making them thickened. This results in shoulder joint pains and dysfunction.
The main symptoms of frozen shoulder are adhesive shoulder joints and problems concerning its movement. For example, the patient may not be able to fully lift an arm over his/her heard or cannot cross his/her arm at the back. These dysfunctions may coexist with pains while moving or staying still. There are 3 phases of frozen shoulder:
- Phase 1: Freezing – The patient will start to feel pains in the shoulder joints, especially when moving the joints. Freezing typically lasts from 6 weeks to 9 months.
- Phase 2: Frozen – Painful symptoms may lessen during this stage, but joint movement is reduced as well. During the 4 to 9 months of the frozen stage, stiffness increases in the joints.
- Phase 3: Thawing – Pains still remain but less than the phase 1. The joint movement starts to recover. This phase usually takes 5-26 months.
In terms of physiotherapy treatments, they work well in the phase 1 which is the start of symptoms. They can reduce risks of adhesive joints in a short period of time. Even the patient is in the phase 3, physiotherapy treatments can help but may take longer until recovery can be seen.
- Bend shoulders to increase joint movement.
- Use heat to reduce pain and muscle stiffness such as hot press and ultrasound.
- Use an electrical muscle stimulator to reduce pain.
- Exercise to strengthen muscles around shoulder joints to maintain their movement. Patients who exercise are found to recover from frozen shoulder more quickly and have less chances to have recurring symptoms.
Contact Rainbow Arokaya Holistic Longevity Center for more information.