Shoulder pain can be extremely difficult to deal with, especially when the pain is chronic. Although some shoulder pain may be the result of a simple strain that will heal on its own, some shoulder pain is the result of permanent damage. Whether it was an acute injury that damaged your shoulder, or the wear and tear of an active life, the pain from the damages can be hindering to your lifestyle. If you are suffering from chronic shoulder pain, contact us to learn about the types of shoulder surgery we offer. In the meantime, read on to learn some practical ways you can cut down on shoulder pain.
ADJUST YOUR LIFESTYLE
If you have chronic shoulder pain, it may be necessary to adjust your lifestyle. Stray from activities that will put undue stress on your shoulders. This can apply to both recreational activities and work-related scenarios, including the following:
- Avoid activities that require prolonged and repetitive use of your shoulders.
- If your job requires you to be at a desk, watch your posture. Get up for breaks frequently to stretch your shoulders.
- Be careful about what you carry. Do not wear a heavy backpack for prolonged periods of time.
- Perform exercises as prescribed by your doctor. These activities should be focused on building strength without stressing the damaged components of your shoulder.
IMPROVE YOUR DIET AND HEALTH
Although there is no magic cure for shoulder damage, improving your health overall will contribute to lowered pain levels. This is a twofold process. First, maintain good health through participating in exercise and activity. Though you need to avoid exercise that aggravates your shoulder, you can still keep fit through other activities. Even committing to a 30-minute brisk walk daily is proven to lead to weight loss and improved health. This is particularly important if you do not partake in any daily activity. Talk to your doctor about what exercise is most beneficial for your needs. Any pain or injury will be compounded by inactivity and weight gain.
The second component to improving your health is found in the food you eat. When you suffer from chronic pain, it is important to implement a healthy diet. While no diet will cure your pain, eating poorly will increase your pain.
Stay away from:
- Foods high in sugar: Sugary foods will not only worsen pain due to increased insulin levels, they can lead to weight gain, which will also compound your pain.
- Foods with aspartame: Avoiding sugar does not mean you should pick up the “sugar-free” options many food products tout. These items are usually made with artificial sweeteners such as aspartame. This artificial sweetener will actually activate neurons that lead to an increase in pain sensitivity.
- Items containing MSG: It is generally a good idea to avoid MSG at all costs as it can cause a variety of health complications. This food additive can also stimulate your pain receptors and increase your sensitivity to existing pain.
- Whole foods: Avoiding processed food will lead to a healthier lifestyle overall. By opting for whole fruits and vegetables, you can lose weight in a healthy way.
- A balanced diet: This may seem obvious, but stick to a well-balanced diet. Your doctor can help you determine your specific dietary needs. Avoid fad diets or diets that are overly restrictive. These diets will not lead to a long-term healthy lifestyle. It is better to moderate what you eat and choose healthy options than to try to cut out all of one item at once.
SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT WITH DR. KOVACK
If you are suffering from chronic shoulder pain, it is important to consult with a professional who specializes in shoulder surgery. Putting off shoulder treatment will only worsen your pain and possibly cause more damage than already exists. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Kovack to learn about shoulder replacement surgery alternatives like arthroscopic shoulder surgery.