Frozen shoulder can begin mysteriously. Usually frozen shoulder occurs with repetitive use or when an injury limits your shoulder’s movement. After many micro tears, a muscle goes into spasm and the central nervous system automatically shuts down the muscles to guard the shoulder from pain and damage. This can happen with even a small amount of scar tissue in the joint or along the nerve pathways. These things can build up slowly or quickly after any shoulder injury.
On the other side of the coin, some people experience an obvious shoulder injury. This might be a rotator cuff injury or a dislocated shoulder. Both require a period of stability to allow the ligaments, tendons, and joint to heal. If a person does not begin to bring gradual movement back into the joint, though, tendons and ligaments effectively “freeze.” They shorten and tighten. Scar tissue begins to fill the joint, allowing less room for the bones to move. Movement causes pain in any part of the joint, including the shoulder blades.
Acupuncture for frozen shoulder offers healing in a variety of ways.
First, it provides pain relief in the affected joint. Research shows that acupuncture pins stimulate a variety of responses in the body. One of these is the triggering of endorphins, which are natural, pain-fighting chemicals in the body.
A research study that included over 20,000 patients showed that people who received acupuncture treatments felt greater pain relief and they stayed better after their treatments ended. The people that received “standard of care” without acupuncture felt less relief and they got worse after their treatments concluded.
Acupuncture for shoulder pain also helps to reduce inflammation. Inflammation takes up even more space in the joint, making movement more difficult and painful. It also continues a vicious cycle of stagnation, making the frozen shoulder worse.
Further, acupuncture for frozen shoulder helps by increasing blood flow and circulation to the joint. Our bodies heal faster when blood is moving properly. This is a crucial step to promote healing. This makes acupuncture an essential medical specialty for solutions and management of pain. These are a few of the ways acupuncture helps the body to heal and encourages movement to reduce pain from frozen shoulder.