Frozen shoulder is not as simple as the shoulder getting stuck. There are two ways to develop frozen shoulder.
A true “adhesive capsulitis” is when you literally wake up from one day to the next with extreme pain. That pain is constant and stops you from moving and then the joint gets stuck. There are several phases to it and therapy can help.
The other way is the most common way people think about frozen shoulder. If you hurt your shoulder and then unconsciously or consciously decide not to use your shoulder fully because of pain, then over a short period of time the shoulder joint itself gets stiff and gets stuck. You end up with a frozen shoulder. It can be painful all the time or it can be painful when you try to move it. Either way, there is pain. The longer you cannot move your shoulder fully, the more your shoulder will be in pain.
Frozen shoulder can also develop after a surgery due to pain – by not moving your shoulder as much as it needs to move.
You can find additional information on our YouTube channel at Hands-on Therapy Services, including:
The downside of waiting, the upside of knowing when to get help.
Is there a downside to waiting? Yes.
This happened to Vanessa, who came to our occupational therapy clinic in Miami with shoulder pain that began six months prior. At first, she tried to take care of it herself. But she was in so much pain that she was having trouble working and sleeping and putting her hair in a ponytail. She saw a doctor, who gave her pills to help with the pain and sent her to therapy. Unfortunately, she wasn’t making much progress in therapy, so he suggested injection, then surgery to clean out the shoulder. Her shoulder was so stuck and painful. But her MRI didn’t show a tear of the tendons. She had developed a “frozen shoulder.”
She became distraught over the idea of surgery. She did NOT want that. She did not feel like she had explored all her options yet. She did NOT want PILLS, INJECTIONS, or SURGERY.
However, she had already tried doing physical/occupational therapy and it didn’t seem to help. Frustrated and worried about possible surgery, she decided to try one more time with us at Hands-On Therapy Services, knowing that we help people like her to become pain-free and avoid injections and surgery.
Actionable Steps You Can Take
If you have specific shoulder issues and you’re not sure what to do, or not quite ready to spend time and money with us, then start with some actionable steps you can do at home.
Contact us to grab your very own Shoulder Pain Guide. We have detailed tips and advice in there.
Find us on YouTube at Hands-on Therapy Services, where we have videos on ways you can get started on your own.
Tune in next week, and I will go into more detail about the 3 top stretches to get rid of frozen shoulder.
Written by Hoang Tran
About the author
Hoang Tran is an occupational therapist, the owner of Hands-on Therapy Services and author of the book “The Hands-On Approach”. She loves helping people with shoulder problems and offers services like frozen shoulder treatment in Miami, because she knows how bad and debilitating it can get. Her efforts effectively bring her patients back to full functionality, without pills, injections or surgery. For inquiries call her at 786-615-9879 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also visit her clinic or schedule an appointment.
The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.