Adhesive Capsulitis or Frozen Shoulder is a condition characterized by stiffness and pain in one or both shoulders that reduces the mobility. It usually affects people after 40, and 3% of the world’s population suffers from it.
It can be a serious health issue that should be medically treated in order to prevent additional complications.
It is most often caused by a formation of a scar tissue in the shoulder, that tightens the joint capsule and thickens it. Yet, it can also result from an injury or a fracture as well.
Women diabetics, older than 40, are at the highest risk of developing it. Moreover, the risk is also elevated in the case of heart disease, stroke, Parkinson’s disease, hypothyroidism, and hyperthyroidism.
The symptoms caused by this condition gradually develop in three different stages, as follows:
The freezing or painful stage — This stage lasts from 6 to 9 months, with the pain gradually increasing.
The Frozen Stage – It lasts for 4-6 months, with the stiffness remaining at the same level, but the pain aggravates.
Thawing Stage — This stage lasts from 1 to 2 years, and the pain slowly passes.
This condition is diagnosed by a physical exam, its symptoms, and signs, a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) or X-ray. As soon as it is diagnosed, these are the best treatments:
- Shoulder Manipulation – The joint is gently moved to increase its mobility
- Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) – It numbs the nerve endings in the spinal cord
- Shoulder Arthroscopy – This surgery involves the insertion of a tube inside the shoulder joint, which removes adhesions or a scar tissue.
- Cold or Hot Compression Packs – They reduce the swelling and pain in the shoulder
- Physical Therapy – Exercise improves the flexibility and mobility of the shoulder
The intensity of the pain decreases with these treatments, but the recovery process is always slow until all symptoms disappear.
The inflammation in the shoulder can be naturally relieved as well:
- Gently massage the affected area
- Drink ginger tea on a daily basis
- Apply olive oil on the shoulder to soothe the pain and inflammation
- Massage it with coconut oil
- Apply a mixture of honey and lime to the painful area
- Enjoy a warm bath with a few tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to soothe the inflammation
- Apply a few mint leaves on it to treat the pain and swelling
- Enjoy a warm Epsom salt bath to improve blood circulation and treat the symptoms
- Boil a few garlic cloves in coconut oil and apply the remedy on the shoulder
- Consume blackstrap molasses with honey, ginger and apple cider vinegar.
Additionally, Janet Travell, the author of Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction: The Trigger Point Manual, says, “When so many authors agree that the cause of a disease is enigmatic, there is a good reason to expect that a major etiologic factor is being overlooked.”
Travell believes that the trigger points are in the subscapularis muscle, and they can be eliminated with the help of acupuncture, which is a much better alternative to painkillers, cortisone shots, and surgery.
Therefore, frozen shoulder can be highly painful and very uncomfortable, but it does not have to ruin your life. These natural ways to reduce pain and prevent it from returning have provided positive effects in numerous people. Remember to stay active, as immobility is the main cause of the issue.
Moreover, make sure you consult your doctor for any possible treatments, as a frozen shoulder is not a simple health issue that can pass on its own. In fact, it can be highly debilitating if left untreated, so do anything needed to heal it on time.