Frozen Shoulders And Its Causes
Frozen shoulder is a condition in which your shoulders are painful, stiff and limit their motion in all directions. It is also known as adhesive capsulitis. It is the result of shrinkage of the capsule that surrounds the shoulder joint, thickening, scarring or inflammation of shoulder bones. Frozen shoulders may also be a result of a stroke, broken arm or shoulder injury that has made it difficult to move. In such cases, you need to consult with a doctor so you will know the range of motion you need to maintain for your shoulders.
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Physical therapy is the best treatment for this condition. Regular exercises that can give your shoulder joints some stretches and strengthens the muscle will help you relieve this condition. You need to warm up before exercises. Taking warm showers for 10 to 15 minutes, using a moist heating pad or damp towel is the best way to warm up.
Exercises To Your Rescue
Exercises are the best solution for frozen shoulders. In all exercises you need to stretch to a point of tension and not until the pain. A few exercises are discussed here:
- Armpit stretch: Use your good arm, lift the affected arm above chest level. Bend your knees to a level such that it stretches the armpit. Repeat it 10 to 20 times.
- Finger walk: Stand three quarters of an arms length and reach out the wall with your affected arm from the waist level. Bend your elbows, with your two fingers and walk up till you can reach comfortably. Slowly lower the hand with your good arm. Repeat the exercise 10 to 15 times.
- Towel stretch: Hold a 3 foot long towel behind the back in a horizontal direction with both your hands. Ensure that the affected arm is down now pull up the towel with your good arm. Repeat this 10 to 15 times.
- Pendulum stretch: Stand, relax your shoulders and lean over. Allow the affected side arm to hang down. In small circles, swing the arm. It should be about a foot in diameter. Repeat for 10 rotations, clockwise and anticlockwise. Increase the diameter of your swing as your condition improves.
- Cross body reach: Use your good arm, lift your affected arm at the elbow and bring it across your body. Stretch and hold for 15 to 20 seconds. Repeat 10 to 20 times a day.
Strengthening Your Muscles
Perform all the above stretching exercises regularly. Once you find that the condition is improving you can add the strengthening exercises. Rotator cuff strengthening exercises ensure that your shoulder muscles gain strength. Hold an exercise rubber band in your hands and your elbows at 90 degrees close to your body. Rotate the affected arm outward two to three inches. Hold for a few seconds and repeat it 10 to 15 times a day. Another strengthening exercise is the inward rotation. Hook one end of the rubber band around a door knob. Hold the other end with your affected arm. With your elbows in 90 degrees, pull the band toward your body two to three inches. Hold for a few seconds and repeat it 10 to 15 times.