If you have no prior history of shoulder problems, sleeping in an unfavorable position is most likely the reason for the pain. Sleeping on the shoulder for an extended period of time can pinch the rotator cuff tendons or shoulder bursae, stimulating an inflammatory response. Usually, after 48 hours this pain subsides as the inflammation decreases.
Arthritis, separated shoulders, or bursitis are among the number of other medical conditions that may be causing your shoulder pain.
- Try sleeping on your back: add a body pillow to prevent yourself from turning onto your shoulder throughout the night
- Remove extra pillows: if you’re someone who uses multiple pillows when sleeping, you may be over-pronating. This position can overstretch your muscles and ligaments in your neck and with time, cause pain.
- Avoid sleeping with your arm under the pillow: these positions compress the tendons, leading to possible arm weakness
- Unsupportive mattress/pillows: if you can’t remember the last time you got a new mattress, it may be time for a new one. Old mattresses tend to sag in the middle with use, adding pressure on your muscles
Common Shoulder Pain Conditions
If your shoulder pain continues despite these changes to your sleep, then one of these reasons may be the culprit of your discomfort:
- Frozen shoulder: also known as adhesive capsulitis, this chronic condition is characterized by an inability to move the joint in any direction due to extreme stiffness and pain. With this condition, the connective tissue surrounding your shoulder joint thickens and tightens, restricting movement.
- Rotator Cuff Tendinitis: occurs from the gradual wearing down of the rotator cuff tendons. Keeping your shoulder in the same position for a long period of time or participating in activities where your arm frequently lifts above your head (swimming, tennis, baseball) can cause this condition.
- Spinal Stiffness: poor posture and repetitive bending can eventually decrease spine mobility making you more prone to injury. The long hours we spend nowadays in front of a screen or hunched over at a desk can contribute to an eventual decline in our spine and rib cage mobility.
- Referred Pain: It may be that the source of your shoulder pain is actually coming from another area such as your neck. To be sure, consult your doctor to get a thorough assessment.
What Are My Treatment Options?
Anti-inflammatory medications, corticosteroids, and physiotherapy are among the treatments considered to treat shoulder pain.
At ReGen Medical Dallas, High-Intensity Laser Therapy (HILT) in combination with Myofascial Acoustic Compression Therapy (MyACT) is used to non-invasively and cost-effectively treat shoulder pain at its root cause. Consult your doctor to find out what the best treatment is for you.
Call us at (214) 855-7750 or contact us online to discuss our treatment options with our staff today!