What is a Frozen Shoulder, and What Causes it?
A frozen shoulder is a condition that limits your ability to move your arm. The leading cause of a frozen shoulder is pain, but you may also have difficulty moving your arm or even just feel it is stiff.
The symptoms usually come on gradually and get worse over time. The condition is also known as adhesive capsulitis or periarthritis. Frozen shoulder typically affects people between the ages of 40 and 60 years old and is more common in women than men. It usually occurs in people who have had an injury to the shoulder or who have a chronic medical condition, such as diabetes.
However, the exact cause is unknown. Treatment for a frozen shoulder includes massage therapy, pain medication, and corticosteroid injections. Surgery is rarely needed. With treatment, most people recover from a frozen shoulder within a few months or years.
How can Massage Therapy help restore movement to the shoulder?
Shoulder pain is a common complaint, and it can range from mildly annoying to debilitating. Massage therapy is one possible treatment option for shoulder pain, and it may help to restore movement in the shoulder joint quickly and efficiently.
The shoulder is a complex joint, and it is held together by a system of muscles, tendons, and ligaments. These structures can become tight or inflamed, causing pain and restricted movement. Massage therapy can help to release these restrictions, allowing for greater mobility in the shoulder.
In addition, massage therapy can promote blood flow to the area, which can help to reduce inflammation and speed up the healing process. If you are experiencing shoulder pain, massage therapy may be an effective treatment option for you.
Different techniques can be used to achieve this goal:
There are a variety of techniques that can be used in massage therapy to restore movement and reduce pain in the shoulder. These can include:
Fascial Stretch Therapy (FST):
Fascial stretch therapy is a technique used to improve flexibility and range of motion. It uses manual pressure, along with traction and stretching to apply targeted tension to the fascia around the shoulder joint. This stretches the connective tissue surrounding the joint, allowing for greater mobility in the shoulder and restoring movement.
Deep Tissue Massage:
Deep tissue massage is a type of massage that targets deep muscles and connective tissue. This technique is used to break up scar tissue and knots, reducing tension in the shoulder and restoring movement.
Swedish massage is a type of massage that uses kneading and long strokes to relax muscles and reduce inflammation. This technique can help reduce pain in the shoulder due to tightness or tension, allowing for a greater range of motion and improved mobility.
Trigger Point Therapy:
Trigger point therapy targets specific points in the shoulder muscles that cause pain when pressed. These points are released by applying pressure to the area, thus relieving tension and allowing for improved mobility.
Applying heat or cold:
Applying heat or cold to the shoulder can help to reduce inflammation and pain. This can be done before or after massage therapy, depending on your individual needs.
By combining these different techniques, massage therapists can help loosen tight muscles around the shoulder joint and restore movement. With regular sessions, you should start to notice an increase in mobility and a decrease in pain in the affected area.
What to expect from a session of fascial massage therapy for a frozen shoulder?
At Kaizen, we understand how difficult it can be to live with a frozen shoulder. We specialize in fascial stretch therapy (FST) and use targeted tension to loosen the fascia around the joint and restore movement.
When you receive a fascial massage therapy session for a frozen shoulder, you can expect your therapist to use gentle, slow strokes. At Kaizen, our Registered Massage Therapists (RMT) may also use light pressure and traction to release the connective tissue around the joint.
You may feel some discomfort during the session, but this is normal and will subside as the tissue begins to loosen. After the session, you may notice an improvement in your range of motion and reduced pain. However, it is important to note that a frozen shoulder is a chronic condition that often takes several months to resolve. As such, multiple sessions may be necessary in order to experience significant results.
Benefits of Fascial Stretch Therapy:
Plenty of benefits associated with fascial stretch therapy. These include:
- Reduced pain and inflammation
- Increased range of motion
- Better Flexibility
- Improved posture and alignment
- Increased blood flow to the area
- Strengthened muscles around the joint
- Faster healing time
Are there any risks associated with Fascial Massage therapy?
While fascial massage therapy is generally considered to be a safe and effective treatment option, there are some potential risks that should be considered. First, deep tissue massage can often be painful, particularly for those with sensitive skin or underlying health conditions. It is important to communicate with your therapist about your comfort level and to stop the treatment if you experience any discomfort.
Second, there is a potential for bruising or other skin irritation, especially if the therapist uses too much pressure. Again, it is important to communicate with your therapist and to let them know if you are experiencing any discomfort.
Finally, there is a small risk of contracting an infection, although this is rare. Overall, fascial massage therapy is generally a safe and effective treatment option, but it is important to be aware of the potential risks before beginning any treatment.
Yes, massage therapists can help to reduce pain and restore movement in a frozen shoulder. However, it is important to note that frozen shoulders often take several months to resolve, so multiple sessions may be necessary for you to experience significant results.
Fascial stretch therapy (FST) is often the most effective type of massage for frozen shoulders, as it utilizes targeted tension to loosen the fascia around the joint and restore movement.
It is important to avoid activities that may cause further irritation or stress on the shoulder. This includes sudden, jerky movements and lifting heavy objects with your affected arm. Additionally, you should avoid putting your shoulder in uncomfortable positions for too long, as this can further aggravate the area and increase pain.
Some vitamins and supplements are beneficial for people with a frozen shoulder. These include omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B12, glucosamine, and chondroitin sulfate. However, it is important to talk to your doctor before taking any supplements, as they can interact with medications or cause side effects in some individuals.