Shoulder Pain at Night or While Resting
Learn the most common causes of this ailment and what you can do to treat it.
The last thing a person wants is to be woken during the night by shoulder pain but unfortunately, this is something that peoples around the country deal with often. For some reason, it seems as if symptoms associated with injury and illness intensify at night so for someone with shoulder pain, it would naturally be worse at night. However, when shoulder pain at night is to the point of keeping someone from sleeping, the time has come to take serious action.
Understanding Nighttime Pain
Although having pain during the day is common, experiencing shoulder pain at night is something commonly seen with many injuries, especially tendonitis of the rotator cuff. Typically, the body used to sleep as an opportunity to hear and restore but when it comes to rotator cuff problems, the supraspinatus tendon actually becomes worse at night, not better.
During the day, traction is provided by the arm, which in turn keeps the space to the tendons open. Because of this, blood circulation is not restricted. However, when a person lays down to sleep, the top portion of the arm actually pushed down on the supraspinatus tendon, pinching it and making blood flow more difficult. As a result, the damaged tendon does not have the ability to heal as it should.
With the rotator cuff tendon not getting proper blood flow while sleeping but also having compromised oxygen, the pain intensifies. Although this same problem occurs with other causes of shoulder pain at night, it seems to affect people with tendonitis most. With pain, an individual does not sleep well, which leads to the following day of fatigue, poor concentration, poor stamina, and more.
Identifying Cause of Pain
Nighttime shoulder pain could be caused by any number of things. While treatment could be the same for many of the causes, there would be reasons for the pain that would need to be treated in a unique way. For this reason, it would prove beneficial to identify the cause of pain so an appropriate treatment plan could be devised. In some cases, this could be accomplished by paying attention to symptoms but in other instances, a visit to the doctor would be warranted.
Once the reason for experiencing shoulder pain at night has been confirmed, an individual would have two primary options – conventional medicine or alternative medicine. Often, supplements, exercises, organic medicinal lotions, and home remedies work great but if necessary a number of treatments such as prescription medication, therapy, and even surgery for severe cases could be considered as viable options.
We will first talk about some of the alternative treatments that would help when it comes to shoulder pain at night. While it might sound odd to use exercise for treating pain, when it comes to shoulder pain, exercise is extremely helpful. Prior to bed, gentle yet focused exercises would be performed to strengthen muscles around the damaged area. As a result, better support is provided, which promotes healing but also reduces or eliminates pain.
Another possibility for treating shoulder pain at night would be with an immobilizer device. The goal would be finding the right brace that would offer immobility and support needed to simulate the position of the shoulder during the day. As stated above, this would keep the area to the tendons open, allowing proper blood and oxygen flow that helps with healing and ultimately, pain relief. People who have used an immobilizer to treat shoulder pain at night agree the right device is not just effective, but it offers quick results.
Certain supplements would also help reduce or eliminate pain experienced while trying to sleep. It would be important to choose an organic or all-natural product manufactured by a reputable company. Some of the most beneficial of all supplements specific to shoulder pain at night include glucosamine, which is a powerful amino acid, chondroitin, which promotes strong and healthy cartilage, and MSM, proven to heal damaged ligaments and keep them healthy.
Along with the above-mentioned remedies, conventional medicine would also prove helpful for many people struggling with shoulder pain at night. In this case, it would be necessary to talk to a doctor whereby a firm diagnosis would be made and several treatment options recommended. One of the more common treatments is anti-inflammatory medicine, which reduces swelling but also reduces pain.
Steroidal injections are also used for joint pain and while not necessarily a pleasant experience to get, they work. To help with shoulder pain at night, it would be recommended for an individual to get an injection in the morning so any tenderness would dissipate. While some people get relief with a single injection, sometimes it takes two to three injections.
The final treatment we wanted to mention for shoulder pain at night is physical therapy. Remember, stretching type exercises would be highly beneficial but in addition to this, actual therapy would be ideal for someone with chronic pain. The type of therapy would depend on the cause of the pain, as well as severity but working with a qualified therapist, one or more therapy treatments would be administered. In addition to getting pain relief, physical therapy helps heal the shoulder joint.
Dealing Effectively with Shoulder Pain at Night or While Resting, Last Updated: 2/12/2017