Massage Therapy For Treating Shoulder Pain


Shoulder pain can make almost everything you do uncomfortable. Nagging pain that limits your range of motion can usually be treated with massage therapy, either in part or in full. If you’re investigating massage therapy as a solution to your shoulder pain, you just might find the answers you’re looking for at Greentoes in Tucson.


How Common Is Shoulder Pain?

A significant portion of people will experience shoulder pain at some point, placed at 20% by most estimates. Of the 20% of people who experience shoulder pain, half of them will only experience that pain in the short term. This means about 10% of people will have persistent or long term shoulder pain. With one in every ten people afflicted, it’s safe to say that shoulder pain is relatively common.

What Causes Shoulder Pain?

Injury, accidents, and overuse can often cause shoulder pain. Shoulder pain is broken down into several categories, with each affecting the joints, tendons, and muscles differently. Different types of pain may require different treatments or massage techniques, so it’s important to understand the origin of the pain you experience.

Rotator cuff injuries are a common culprit of shoulder pain. They occur from overusing the shoulder, particularly in a lifting motion. People who often hoist heavy boxes or stock high shelves are most at risk for rotator cuff injuries. The tendons tear and weaken, causing aches and pains around the shoulder. Exercises and stretches to improve range of motion, as well as a circulation improving massage, can help the rotator cuff heal naturally.

People with arthritis in their shoulder will be left to cope with long term aches, since there is no cure for arthritis. Even without a cure, most of the discomfort associated with arthritis can be eliminated with a proper management plan. Massage can be used to treat arthritis if it’s planned for the right times. Acute inflammation at the time of massage may make the pain worse, whereas waiting until the inflammation subsides can provide substantial relief.

Bursitis can happen in any joint, but most people find that it occurs within their shoulders. Bursa are cushions within the joints that prevent friction and pressure. When these cushions become inflamed, they make movement painful. Since the bursa are inaccessible via massage, they cannot be directly treated. Instead, massage to the surrounding area can reduce the amount of pressure placed on the inflamed bursa to significantly reduce the discomfort.

Tendonitis is a common condition that affects many people, from athletes to those who live relatively sedentary lifestyles. Overuse of the tendons leads to painful inflammation, sometimes on its own and sometimes as a side effects of a coexisting medical condition. Massage can give the tendons and surrounding tissue a little bit of a gentle stretch, releasing the tension and improving their ability to heal.

Shoulder impingement, a condition where the shoulder blade is improperly settled, is easily reversed through massage. The muscles responsible for this condition are treated and the pressure is released, removing the impingement and restoring the natural range of motion. The body is encouraged to return to proper alignment.

How Does Massage Relieve Shoulder Pain?

A proper massage addresses pain from two angles – by treating the problem physically and by encouraging the body to produce pain-dulling hormones. Muscle tension, the buildup of the body’s waste products, and a lack of circulation all contribute to muscular discomfort. Massage is designed to address all three of these factors.

Stimulation loosens the muscles, promoting the circulation of blood, fluids, and oxygen. The body is easily able to remove waste products, and the influx of highly oxygenated blood nourishes the muscles. This is what muscles need in order to heal, and massage speeds up the process. The muscles are left looser and longer than they were before.

During a massage, the body releases hormones that naturally ease pain and reduce stress levels. It’s easier to sleep at night, and more comfortable to move around. It’s worth mentioning that rigorous movement or exercise right after a massage isn’t a great idea. The body needs some time to recover after an injury massage before regular activity can be slowly resumed.

Using Massage As A Part Of A Treatment Plan

Some shoulder injuries will require surgery, making it important that serious discomfort is first assessed by a doctor. Your doctor will be able to tell you if and when massage can become a part of your treatment plan. Most often, doctors will agree that patients with shoulder pain will benefit from massage therapy.

Let Us Show You

Greentoes would like to welcome you to our calm, relaxing environment in Tucson. One of our massage specialists will be able to help ease your shoulder pain. You can book an appointment with us online or by phone if you’d like to find the relief you need.

our locations

529 N 6th Ave
Tucson, AZ 85705

greentoes North
615 W Roller Coaster Rd
Tucson, AZ 85704

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