Chiropractic care can help relieve joint and muscle pain. It can also support injury prevention and recovery. Individuals with shoulder pain may benefit from working with a chiropractor.

Medical treatment for shoulder pain may include certain medications, rest, or surgery. A chiropractor may also be able to relieve shoulder pain through spinal manipulation, massage, or other forms of alternative care.

This article explores chiropractic for shoulder pain in more detail.

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Multiple clinical studies have found that chiropractic can help relieve shoulder pain and other symptoms of shoulder conditions.

In one, adults with new-onset shoulder pain received manual manipulations from chiropractors and physiotherapists. After 3 months, all participants experienced significant pain relief. The treatment also helped restore the range of motion in the affected shoulders.

Researchers have found several biological reasons why chiropractic care can help with musculoskeletal pain. For example, spinal manipulation helps stretch spinal muscles, which promotes the growth and repair of muscles and nerves.

Experts have also found that chiropractic care can promote neuroplasticity. This term refers to the body’s ability to reorganize the nervous system to help heal. Chiropractic treatment may speed recovery from shoulder pain by boosting nervous system function.

Learn more about chiropractic care.

A chiropractor is a healthcare professional who specializes in the musculoskeletal system.

They use spinal manipulation and other types of manual therapy to improve joint function and mobility. They may also provide guidance on diet and exercise.

A chiropractor may also use treatments such as:

Chiropractic care is usually safe and does not cause serious side effects. Some people may experience stiffness or tiredness after visiting a chiropractor, but these typically resolve on their own within a few days.

Learn more about chiropractors.

Shoulder pain may occur for various reasons.

Some individuals may develop shoulder pain after sustaining a sports injury. Others may experience shoulder damage during a car accident. Damage to muscles, tendons, bones, and cartilage can all cause shoulder pain.

Common injuries that cause shoulder pain may also include:

In addition to injuries, certain health conditions can lead to shoulder pain. For example, arthritis is a joint condition that can cause pain in the shoulders. Overuse of the shoulders may also cause tendon inflammation, which can cause shoulder pain.

Several other treatment options can help with managing shoulder pain, such as:

A physical therapist can recommend exercises to help strengthen the shoulders, which can reduce the chance of shoulder injury and speed recovery after an injury.

Noninvasive treatments are effective in most instances of mild or moderate shoulder pain. Severe shoulder injuries may require more intensive treatment options. In certain cases, surgical treatment may be necessary.

People can speak with a healthcare professional to learn more about managing shoulder pain.

Learn about exercises for shoulder pain.

Although it is not always possible to prevent every injury or health condition that can cause shoulder pain, taking proactive steps to protect the shoulders can reduce the risk of damage.

Individuals who work at a desk can take steps to reduce the risk of shoulder pain from improper posture or overuse. Some tips for office workers include:

  • using a supportive chair
  • taking regular breaks for stretching or other gentle exercises
  • keeping the elbows and knees bent at 90-degree angles
  • practicing good posture while seated

Improving shoulder strength and flexibility can also help prevent shoulder pain. Completing a proper warmup before strenuous exercise can decrease the risk of injury.

In one study, researchers found that an injury prevention program reduced the risk of shoulder injury among young baseball players by around 52%.

The following are answers to some common questions about chiropractic for shoulder pain.

Can a chiropractor fix a pinched nerve in the shoulder?

Chiropractic care can help relieve pain from pinched nerves. In addition to pain relief, chiropractic care can improve joint function and mobility.

It is best for individuals with a pinched nerve in the shoulder to consult a healthcare professional about alternative treatments, such as chiropractic care.

Do chiropractors relocate a shoulder?

Chiropractors offer care to complement conventional Western medicine, but injuries such as a shoulder dislocation typically require care from a healthcare professional, such as a medical doctor.

A medical doctor can perform a physical exam and take a medical history. They may also order an X-ray or other imaging test to check for fractures. After a person has visited a medical doctor, a chiropractor may support healing from a shoulder dislocation.

Can a chiropractor adjust a shoulder impingement?

A shoulder impingement occurs when a shoulder tendon rubs against other tissues or bones. This condition is a common cause of shoulder pain.

Chiropractic care focuses on encouraging the body to heal itself. A chiropractor may be able to speed healing from shoulder impingement. They may also help reduce shoulder pain.

Chiropractic care is a complementary treatment for musculoskeletal pain. This treatment may help treat shoulder pain in certain individuals.

Shoulder pain is common and has several different causes. Injuries, overuse, and arthritis may all cause shoulder pain. To treat this pain, a chiropractor uses spinal adjustments and other types of manual manipulation.

Although many people experiencing shoulder pain find relief in chiropractic care, it is best to visit a medical doctor for personalized treatment guidance before consulting a chiropractor.