Frozen shoulder is a shoulder condition in which the motion of your shoulder feels limited. It is not a commonly known condition; however, many middle-aged and elderly men and women tend to face it. Being aware of the causes, symptoms, and basic treatments for this condition can help in dealing with it better.
What Is Shoulder Stiffness?
Shoulder stiffness is an illness that slowly stiffens the range of motion of the patient’s shoulder over time. Patients can experience severe pain and discomfort while moving their shoulders or reaching for an object on a higher shelf. Frozen shoulder (ข้อ ไหล่ ติด, which is the term in Thai) is also known as adhesive capsulitis. The tissue in the shoulder joint of the patient thickens and tightens decreasing the space in the shoulder joint.
What Are The Symptoms?
There are some common symptoms of shoulder stiffness. It develops gradually between two to nine months and takes persistent time to be cured. Moreover, in this condition, the patient can feel that the pain in the shoulder worsens at night. The three stages of symptoms are as following:
The Freezing Stage Of The Condition:
In this stage, the patient starts to feel discomfort while moving their shoulders and feels pain.
The Frozen Stage Of The Condition:
The pain slowly starts to subside in this stage but the shoulder becomes stiffer and the range of motion becomes limited.
The Thawing Stage Of The Condition:
In this stage, the patient sees improvement in the movement of the shoulders and the stiffness starts to decrease.
What Are The Causes?
Middle-aged men and women between the ages of 40-60 usually suffer from frozen shoulder. However, women are more prone to this condition. There can be different causes behind it, and a few of them can be underlying as well. Some of the causes are:
- A prolonged period of inactivity due to shoulder injury or surgery.
- Inactivity due to an illness can cause joint inflammation and adhesion.
- Underlying causes such as diabetes which damages blood vessels leading to a poor blood supply.
- Hormonal imbalance or shifts during the early stages of menopause in women.
- Weak immune system or history of thyroid imbalance.
What Are The Treatments?
It is very important to report to a doctor as soon as the symptoms develop. The treatments for shoulder stiffness are physical therapy, mild exercise, medication, home care. In severe cases, one can also undergo surgery.