Acupuncture For Shoulder Pain

While a person’s shoulder may be one of the more robust joints with the most incredible flexibility, it is also susceptible to multiple forms of injury. 

Your shoulders are the joints where your upper-arm bones (humerus), shoulder bones (scapula), and the collarbone (clavicle) meet. The humerus squeezes into the adjusted attachment of the scapula on each side of your body. Each shoulder is held up by a gathering of four muscles and ligaments, called a rotator cup. The rotator cup covers and secures the humerus and allows you to raise and move your arm. 

Many things can cause shoulder pain

Shoulder pain can be caused by many things, such as an accident or fall. Overworking the joint due to a specific job like painting or bricklaying can cause joint inflammation. Some sports also have a way of overworking the shoulders, which is why so many tennis and golf players often suffer from shoulder pain. Agony in the shoulder can also be caused by arthritis and ailments in other parts of the body and is called “referred shoulder pain.”

man experiencing shoulder pain that is untreated

Shoulder injury symptoms

While the shoulders ball-and-socket joint provides a great range of motion for the arms, it also comes at a price. The shoulder happens to be the one joint in the body that gets dislocated the most. Whether at work or playing sports, repeated stress on the joint can lead to tendon tears, muscle stress, and other injuries. 

If you think that you have damaged your shoulder, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Can you move your arm normally?
  • Is your shoulder stiff or painful?
  • Do you feel as if your shoulder could pop out of its socket?
  • Is your shoulder strong enough to complete daily tasks?

If you have an injured shoulder, the best thing to do is to try and rest it. Some find relief from taking a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen. Following reports of considerable side effects and adverse reactions to the use of NSAIDs, the latest guidance from NICE is to avoid their use. Instead, acupuncture is now recognised as an effective way to manage musculoskeletal pain including shoulder pain. 

 Signs that you should seek professional help include:

  • You cannot move your shoulder at all
  • You are suffering from intense pain
  • Your shoulder is swelling up
  • Your arm and hand feel numb
  • Your shoulder looks physically deformed
shoulder pain being treated with acupuncture needles

Acupuncture can help relieve shoulder pain

If the shoulder pain is a recurring or niggling problem, acupuncture is a natural pain relief treatment for relieving shoulder pain. Whether it be a severe injury, a frozen shoulder, or chronic discomfort, acupuncture can actually help you manage the pain associated with a shoulder injury. When used together with a massage treatment, acupuncture can be tremendously helpful in alleviating pain caused by shoulder pain and, in some cases, can even resolve the problem completely.

How do acupuncture and massage help?

When used in conjunction, acupuncture and massage help reduce inflammation and get the blood flowing to the area. An increase in blood flow helps deliver nutrients to the shoulder helping to heal damaged or torn tissue.

A skilled acupuncture practitioner will work with you to determine where the cause of the pain is coming from and how best to treat it. As with many other types of pain, acupuncture complements physical therapy and medical treatments.