If suffering from a frozen shoulder, while you are at home, it would be a good idea to ensure that you keep moving. If you don’t want to overexert yourself, regular movements and gentle stretches can help improve the symptoms.
Moreover, you can also try getting massages from a registered massage therapist (if not, someone you trust). The area of your body that is frozen, such as arm and neck, can benefit from gentle rubbing. This should help increase the circulation and provide a bit of a relief from the pain that you would be experiencing. Another way of improving blood circulation is by applying a warm compress to the painful area. For this, you could use a towel soaked in hot water or use a heating pad (prescribed by a medical professional).
It should be noted that medical conditions and procedures, such as a stroke or a mastectomy, which prevent the movement of your arm, increase the risk of developing frozen shoulder. There are a range-of-motion exercises available that can give relief from this condition.
Here are some exercises that you can do to treat your frozen shoulder.
1. Stretching with the Help of Towel
Take a towel that is approximately three- to four-feet long. Hold one end in one hand and take the other end with the other hand behind your body. Now, hold the towel horizontally. (*If you think that your grip on the towel is not tight enough, you can shorten the distance by moving your hand away from the ends.) Use your good arm to pull the affected arm in the upward direction so that you can feel a stretch on it. Do this exercise for 10 to 20 counts. If it is difficult to do so, start with fewer counts and slowly build up your capacity.
2. Crossover Arm Stretch
Take one arm and place it horizontally across your chest, right below the chin. Extend only as much as you can without feeling pain. Now, hold it for 30 seconds. Thereafter, relax and repeat on the other side. If you find it hard to do it for 30 seconds, begin with 5 seconds and slowly build up your stamina.
3. Take your Finger for a Walk
Stand in front of a wall, approximately three fourths of your arms length away. Now, use the hand of the afflicted shoulder and touch the wall with your fingers at waist level. Slowly walk your fingers up on the wall and go as far as you comfortably can. Remember that, here the work will be done by your fingers, not your shoulder. Once you have reached a point you cannot go any further, slowly come back down. Do this exercise for 10 to 20 counts in a day.
4. Stretching Armpit
Find a shelf about five feet-high. Gently lift your affected arm and put it on the top of the shelf. Now, slowly bend your knees. As you go down, feel the space between your arm and armpit expand. With each kneed bend, increase the amount of stretch you feel, but do not force it more than you can handle. Do this 10 to 20 times a day.
5. Forward Flexion and Supine Position
Let us first understand what the terms flexion and supine mean. While flexion simply means bending, supine means lying down flat on your back. Begin with lying down on your back. Use your good arm to lift your affected arm over your head till you feel a pull on your shoulder muscles. Hold there for a few seconds and gently pull down to the original position.
Note: While doing any of the exercises, stretch enough to experience tension, but not pain. Slowly test your limit and do not do more than you can tolerate.In case you have another disorder with frozen shoulder, please consult your GP or a physiotherapist.