Shoulder arthritis exercises are crucial for those who have any type of arthritis impacting the shoulder area. Whether it’s rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis, not exercising can lead to muscle atrophy, further joint deterioration, and joint instability. Shoulder arthritis can also lead to a frozen shoulder.
Shoulder arthritis exercises should be carried out under the supervision of a healthcare professional. He or she will determine what exercises to avoid and what specific exercises you should include in your daily routine. You might be advised to do stretching exercises, or even water routines.
Each shoulder has joints that are supported by muscles, ligaments, and tendons. When a person has arthritis, it causes inflammation in the joints and can breakdown the cartilage that cushions the bones. This is what leads to stiffness and pain. Many people in this situation avoid exercise because they are afraid the pain will get worse; however, there are exercises for shoulder arthritis pain that can relieve some of the symptoms.
It can be hard to imagine that stretching and strengthening exercises, along with aerobic workouts, can make you feel better when you have shoulder pain—however, there is enough evidence indicating that it does work. Here are a few of the common benefits:
Remaining active is important no matter what is causing the chronic pain. People tend to shy away from sports and recreational activities when they are uncomfortable. Some even become depressed, which can lead to sedentary behavior and weight gain that doesn’t help. It is a vicious cycle that people with shoulder arthritis pain should try not to fall into.
Exercises for shoulder arthritis can be challenging for some people. It is important to always work with a professional health care provider when designing your exercise routine. It is also crucial that you remember to warm up. Any exercise program should begin with a 10-minute warm-up. This will increase blood flow and make the muscles more flexible.
In cases where arthritis is severe, gentle activities and a warm compress might be the best bet. After the exercise routine, post-workout care should be done. This could mean icing the shoulder or gently massaging it.
If you experience pain during shoulder exercises, you should stop and discuss the pain with your doctor before resuming any activities.
There are several different rehab exercises for shoulder arthritis. Here’s a sampling of shoulder stretches for arthritis that will give you an idea of what might be required to keep your condition from getting worse.
Shoulder stretches for arthritis can make a huge difference for a lot of people. Your healthcare provider will likely guide you through specific stretching routines, but here are some that are common for those who suffer shoulder pain related to arthritis.
Some people report that they do much better with aerobic or water exercises for shoulder
arthritis. In most cases, doctors will suggest a low-impact aerobics routine. Aerobic exercises could include walking, jogging, and the use of a treadmill. Many people also find water exercises for shoulder arthritis very soothing.
Water therapy provides buoyancy and reduces pressure on the joints. It also creates resistance, which requires the muscles to work harder in order to move. For instance, it is a lot harder to walk in waist-deep water than it is to walk on land. Many local community centers and health clubs have pools. Some of them offer exercise classes for people interested in low-impact workouts.
While exercise is good for joints, it is important to avoid painful activities. Some people do have to restrict lifting or overhead reaching during the early recovery period. If only one shoulder is affected, you can train yourself to put that shoulder in your shirt or coat pocket to remind yourself not to overdo it. Other suggestions include only lifting objects close to the body, only lifting light weights, and limiting weightlifting to below shoulder level.
When it comes to water activity, many people with shoulder arthritis find that it is best to do a sidestroke or breaststroke, but avoid the backstroke. Serving overhand in tennis or volleyball can be painful, so that should be avoided, and maintaining good posture while writing or doing other tasks can help you lessen the discomfort.
Exercises can be a big help when they are done properly. There is no denying that there are situations where a combination of shoulder exercises and medication are needed. Your doctor might suggest a non-prescription medication. There are also natural remedies, such as taking an Epsom salt bath or lubricating the joints with olive oil.
Whether it’s exercise alone, or a combination of exercise and medication, it is important that those who suffer from shoulder arthritis understand that they have these treatment options. There is hope for reducing pain and minimizing further deterioration of the joints.