Shoulder Blade Pain

Shoulder Blade Pain may occur on or under the Shoulder Blade. The symptoms can be noticeable depending on movement or even at rest. For example, some patients complain of being awakened by pain at night. Pain on the Shoulder Blade is often due to a one-sided strain or overload, irritation and inflammation of the tendons and bursae as well as muscle tension. In addition, accidental injuries in the shoulder area can lead to severe discomfort and restricted mobility.

Shoulder Blade Pain

Shoulder Blade Pain is a painful condition that occurs around the Shoulder Blade . The pain can be felt on one or both sides. Often, complaints on the Shoulder Blade are associated with a restriction of movement.

Shoulder Blade Pain

Shoulder Blade Pain symptoms

Mostly Shoulder Blade pain is due to one-sided stress or overload. The symptoms then disappear after a period of sparing alone. However, if you experience persistent, recurring or acute pain after an accident, a medical check-up should be made to rule out a serious shoulder condition.

The Anatomy Shoulder consists of three main structures, the shoulder girdle (clavicles and shoulder blades), the shoulder joint (Shoulder Blade and humerus), and the shoulder roof (acromion) and the raven beak extension (coracoid), which are bone protrusions to the Shoulder Blade.

Unlike many other joints in the human body, the ligaments of the shoulder joint are relatively weak. Muscles and tendons provide stability to the shoulder, collectively referred to as the rotator cuff. The supraspinatus muscle, the infraspinatus muscle, the teres minor muscle and the subshoulder Blade muscle cover the shoulder joint as part of the rotator cuff.

Those affected often report Shoulder Blade pain centrally between the Shoulder Blade and spine. The symptoms can also occur on or under the Shoulder Blade. Some patients also complain of neck pain or neck tension. Often the pain becomes noticeable when lifting or lifting the arm.

Shoulder Blade Pain Functional causes

Between the shoulder blades are the so-called rhomboid muscles (rhomboid muscle minor and rhomboid muscle major). Due to tension, these muscles can lead to discomfort and have so-called trigger points, noticeable indurations, which are softer and less sensitive to pain by the pressure during the treatment.

The rhomboid muscles are covered by the trapezius muscle (trapezius muscle), which runs out to the shoulders and back of the head and may also show tension and trigger points. Those affected usually complain of pain when contracting the Shoulder Blade towards the spine, which can sometimes radiate to the arm and fingers.

At the upper middle “tip” of the Shoulder Blade, the Shoulder Blade (levator scapulae) sets in, which also has tension and can “stick” to the trapezius muscle so that the muscles and their connective tissue sheaths (fascia) can no longer properly slide together and cause discomfort , Afflicted complain mostly about punctual Shoulder Blade Pain when lifting the shoulder or turn the head obliquely backwards.

Muscle tension is one of the most common causes of Shoulder Blade Pain and can affect any muscle that runs around the shoulder.

Shoulder Blade Pain in rotator cuff syndrome

The term “Rotatorenmanschettensyndrom” (PHS, Periarthropathia humeroscapularis) summarizes various medical conditions that are associated with wear-related damage and can lead, inter alia, to Shoulder Blade pain. The signs of wear range from small cracks (ruptures) in the tendon fibers to complete tendon tear.

Of these, especially the rotator cuff (rotator cuff syndrome), the tendon plate of the shoulder rotator, as well as the biceps tendon (biceps tendon syndrome) are affected. This usually pain and restricted mobility occur. In addition, the tendons and / or the bursa may inflame. Lime deposits, which mainly affect the supraspinatus tendon, or adhesions in the joint can lead to stiffening of the shoulder.Shoulder cracking ).

Shoulder Blade pain in impingement syndrome

The Impingement Syndrome (constriction syndrome) refers to a narrowing of the gliding space of the tendons of the rotator cuffs and the bursa between the humeral head and shoulder roof. As a result, movement restrictions of the shoulder joint occur, which are accompanied by pain. Often the permanent overload is the cause of the discomfort. In some cases, however, the trigger of the disease can not be detected.

In the impingement syndrome, wear-related changes in the saccra-tendinitis occur due to narrowing in the area of ​​the rotator cuff and the superimposed bursae. Due to the crushing sufferers suffer in part from severe pain, including the Shoulder Blade .

Shoulder blade pain in case of injuries

Accident-related injuries in the shoulder are relatively common. These may affect the shoulder joint and / or its surrounding structures such as muscles, tendons and ligaments as well as the shoulder bones. The dislocation of the shoulder joint (shoulder luxation) can lead, among other complaints, also to shoulder blade pain. The same is true for injuries to the other structures of the shoulder.

Under massive force as in traffic accidents, the shoulder blade can break. Such a fracture is usually treated conservatively, provided that no other structures are affected.

In addition, there are numerous other causes that can lead to shoulder blade pain, such as shoulder inflammation, arthrosis, nerve damage, rheumatism, tumors, and vascular disease.

Shoulder Blade Pain risk factors

Among the risk factors for Shoulder Blade Pain include chronic overuse, for example, due to certain sports such as tennis and muscle tension, which are not treated in time. Often a massage is sufficient to prevent strong tension in the shoulder area. Injury-related Shoulder Blade Pain often occurs as a result of traffic accidents or skiing and riding accidents.

Shoulder Blade Pain diagnosis

If shoulder-blade pain occurs acutely as a result of an accident, persistent or recurrent, sufferers should seek medical attention. During the examination, the doctor will first ask questions about the medical history and possible causes of the complaints. This is followed by an in-depth examination of the shoulder, which examines possible movement restrictions and visible changes such as redness and swelling.

Frequently, Shoulder Blade pain occurs during certain movements that may give the clinician important clues in the diagnosis. A palpation examination can, among other things, give indications of trigger points.

To diagnose a muscular or neurological problem, an electromyogram (EMG) can be performed, measuring the activity of the muscles at rest and in motion, so that it can be determined in which area (muscle or nerve) there is a disorder. In addition, the nerve conduction velocity can be determined. Further examinations such as X-ray examination, ultrasound, magnetic resonance therapy (MRI), computed tomography (CT) or blood tests may also be necessary.

Shoulder Blade Pain treatment options

The treatment of shoulder blade pain depends on the cause. In inflammatory processes, anti-inflammatory analgesics are usually administered. In addition, the protection of the shoulder can be useful. In other cases, exercise and targeted muscle growth may be useful. In the case of a fracture of the Shoulder Blade , either the shoulder can be immobilized or, if necessary, an operative procedure be performed.

Since often no disease but rather functional causes are the cause of the discomfort, osteopathic treatment or Rolfing can be promising. Both treatment concepts incorporate the overall statics of the body and examine which structures lead to tensions on the shoulder. Often, trigger points trigger the pain. With various treatment methods, including those from manual therapy or physiotherapy, the trigger points are specifically softer and less sensitive to pain. (Ag)

The anatomy of the Shoulder Blade Pain: where is it actually?

Let’s start with the anatomy of the Shoulder Blade . I explain this as easy as possible. The knowledge of anatomy will help you to develop a better understanding of the causes of Shoulder Blade Pain, exercises and advice on the condition.

The Shoulder Blade (also known medically as “scapula”) is a triangular bone of your upper back and lies at the back of the shoulder girdle.

The shoulder girdle sums up the Shoulder Blade , the raven bone and the collarbone, which connect the anterior extremities of the human body.

More specifically, your shoulder blade connects your humerus and clavicle.

The shoulder blade is created twice and mirrored to the side of your spine on your upper body. That’s why we also speak of “shoulder blades”. 😉 These become visible when you pull your elbows towards the back.

What is the function of shoulder blades?

The function of the shoulder blades is mainly to allow arm and shoulder movements. They serve as muscle origin and are accordingly only surrounded by muscles (so-called “rotator cuff”). The muscles of the rotator cuff are also fundamental to various movements of the arm.

The most common causes of Shoulder Blade Pain

There can be many different causes of Shoulder Blade Pain. Often the causes are difficult to determine. For a longer existence of the complaints you should therefore necessarily consult a doctor.

Often, the affected muscles also have trigger points that are hardening in the muscles and can trigger pain in different parts of the body. For this reason, sometimes Shoulder Blade Pain is accompanied by back pain , neck pain or pain to the fingertips.

Other common causes of Shoulder Blade Pain are:

  • Unilateral pressures: Many people today practice sedentary work. Sedentaryness shortens certain muscles of the shoulder muscles, which have to balance opposite muscle groups. [4] The muscular dysbalance eventually leads to shoulder blade pain. The pectoral muscles shorten in case of lack of training, which leads to a balancing burden on the back and shoulder muscles.
  • Overload: Equally, overwork can cause shoulder blade pain. Regularly carrying a heavy backpack or lifting heavy objects can cause shoulder blade pain.
  • A bad posture: A forward bent back and hanging shoulders not only look unattractive, but also lead to tension. Why? Muscle activity drops in the lug position and your muscles can no longer be supplied with sufficient oxygen. In addition, the more you lean forward and move away from your actual body center of gravity, the more likely you are to strain your back and shoulder muscles.
  • Impingement syndrome : In this syndrome, two bones of your shoulder joint (upper arm head and shoulder roof) collide and cause pain. This pinches the tendons and ligaments of the rotator cuff.
  • Accidents: For example, Shoulder Blade pain can be caused by a fall on your shoulders or arms. In severe accidents, a fracture of the Shoulder Blade can occur.
  • Frozen Shoulder : Due to the degenerative change of the shoulder joint capsule there is a restriction of movement of the shoulders. Therefore, the frozen shoulder is also called “shoulder stiffness”.
  • Rotator Cuff Syndrome: Inflammation of one of the surrounding muscles or tendons of the rotator cuff, resulting in Shoulder Blade Pain. Often also degenerative changes of the rotator cuff lead to pain. [6]
  • Scoliosis : Scoliosis is a spinal deformity in which individual vertebrae are twisted. This deformity also stresses the shoulder blades. For example, many scoliosis patients have a Shoulder Blade as well.

11 simple exercise to solve Shoulder Blade pain

Below, I introduce you to 11 simple everyday tips that you can use to fight shoulder pain and prevent it. Be patient with you in establishing new habits . Because getting used to it takes time, but it will definitely be worth it.

1- In everyday life, ensure sufficient exercise and consider hysiotherapy in the event of existing pain

Exercise is the A & O to keep your body fit. If you sit for most of the day, your musculature shortens and can lead to many complaints. These include, among other things, Shoulder Blade Pain.

The logical conclusion? Move sufficiently and reduce your sitting time!
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), you should walk 10,000 steps every day to keep you healthy. This gets your body going and you keep many diseases off your body..

But it is also important that you do not worry about movement after work. Because studies prove: Even half an hour of jogging can not compensate for the health consequences after a long day sitting.

Therefore, you should already provide at work for regular movement breaks.

Movement can gradually loosen Shoulder Blade Pain bracing. Always listen to your body feeling and always approach the movement slowly.

However, you suffer for some time in increasing pain, consider a physiotherapy into consideration. With this you accustom your body to gentle movements and release your movement blocks.

2- Release your tension with a medically prescribed massage or a self-massage

A massage therapist can solve your shoulder blade pain professionally. Have a massage prescribed by your doctor if your shoulder blade problems do not improve.

3- Tape your Shoulder Blade with kinesio tape to relieve your muscles and joints

Maybe you’ve seen athletes in the strikingly colorful pavement on different body parts and asked you: What are these plaster thought?

The so-called “Kinesio Taping” is used to improve the mobility of certain joints, to inhibit inflammation and to avoid stressful movements. While rigid tapes support complete immobilization of muscles and joints, Kinesio tapes are elastic and flexible. They support various movement processes without exerting stress on the joints and musculature.

The taping, among other things better blood circulation and stimulates the respective layers of tissue under the tape, which can lead to pain relief. However, this is not scientifically proven, although many athletes report a positive effect of kinesio taping.

4- Depending on the cause of Shoulder Blade Pain, use cold or heat treatments

Cooling applications are particularly useful after injuries of the shoulder blades, for example, after an accident. Even with painful inflammation, cold treatments can have a pain-relieving effect.

Thermal therapies, however, reduce the discomfort caused by tension or chronic pain of the shoulder blades.

For both types of therapy, be sure to wrap a cloth around the heat or cold packs. As a result, you avoid burning or hypothermia of the painful area and the area of ​​the skin. It is recommended to do the treatments every four hours for about 15 minutes.

5- Avoid lifting heavy objects and carrying heavy bags

Surely you know that too, if your back or your shoulder blades hurt after carrying heavy bags or lifting heavy objects. Above all, avoid wearing handbags on one shoulder. Better are well padded backpacks that evenly load your shoulders.

Also, when lifting heavy objects, there is a trick to spare your spine: Instead of bending over, bend your knees and then lift the object.

6- Work on an ergonomic workplace

Do you work regularly in the office?

Then you should definitely make sure to ergonomically set up your workplace .

Because most of the day we spend sitting. You wonder how an ergonomic workplace has to do with your Shoulder Blade pain?

You wonder how an ergonomic workplace has to do with your Shoulder Blade pain?

Imagine that your desk is too tall for your height – even if it is only about one to two inches. You automatically take your shoulders up and stay in this working position for hours. Normally you would set your office chair a little higher, but then your feet dangle in the air. And that is not exactly pleasant.

The result: After a long day at work, Shoulder Blade and maybe even back pain are noticeable.

For this reason , researchers now recommend working on height-adjustable desks .

Why? Because you can adjust a height-adjustable desk like our “Desktopia Pro” perfectly to your height and thereby reduce tension. In addition, you relieve your spine by switching between sitting and standing positions.

Also an ergonomic office chair should not be missing, which optimally supports your spine and promotes dynamic sitting (sitting in motion).

Interested in concrete tips for setting up a healthy office? We’ve created an ultimate 144-point guide for you!

7- Practice a good posture

Many people go through everyday life with a crooked posture. The shoulders fall unattractive forward and the back is more a hump that invites you to slide down.

No wonder that shoulder pain does not take long in this appearance. Practice good posture in everyday life to relieve and prevent discomfort.

Imagine that a thread is attached to your head and pulls you upwards. Your spine straightens, your head is straight and your shoulders are straight.

We have illustrated in the following graphic, how a good posture should look like sitting and standing. Does it look like that with you? 😉

8- Stretch your shoulders regularly and work your upper body

As you now know, a weak musculature leads to poor posture and muscular imbalances. Therefore, you should take at least 15 to 20 minutes daily to train your upper body.

In the final section of the article you will find very helpful exercises to prevent and combat shoulder blade pain.

Let’s start warming up with this simple exercise to increase blood flow to your shoulder and neck muscles:

9- Relax your body and mind with progressive muscle relaxation

In case of stress, we unintentionally tighten certain muscle groups in the body. Normally the muscles relax when we reduce stress. But in chronic stress, the muscles remain tense and cause pain.

By using progressive muscle relaxation, you balance the muscle tension and relaxation and reduce stress.

10- For a few days, treat your shoulder blades to rest after an accident

Did you have an accident?

Then you should first rest your shoulder blades and move them as little as possible. Only with the help of a physiotherapist do you gradually start moving again and talk to your doctor.

If you do something wrong, it may otherwise be worse for your shoulder blade pain.

11- Watch your diet to cure inflammation

Certain foods (for example, alcohol, refined sugar, artificial trans fats, wheat flour, processed meat) can cause or aggravate inflammation in the body.

On the other hand, the following anti-inflammatory foods can help against inflammation in the Shoulder Blade :

  • broccoli
  • turmeric
  • ginger
  • spinach
  • Salmon or mackerel
  • onions
  • Nuts and seeds
  • chili

3 pain relieving exercises against shoulder blade tension

In the following exercises, it is important that you always pay attention to your body feeling. If you are currently suffering from severe Shoulder Blade Pain, you should first talk to your doctor. Do not do the exercises if you are unsure about your Shoulder Blade pain.

1- Use this simple stretching to release tension between or under the shoulder blades.

2- Eliminate discomfort under your shoulder blade with this exercise on the door frame.

3- Strengthen your Shoulder Blade muscles and fight the annoying burning between your shoulder blades

Conclusion: Shoulder Blade Pains can be specifically controlled with the right measures

Shoulder Blade Pain is due to various causes, which are usually harmless. If the symptoms persist for some time, you should urgently consult a doctor.

If you stick to the mentioned everyday tips, hopefully you will hopefully be free of complaints soon and prevent your shoulder blade pain in the future as well! 🙂

Shoulder Blade Pain
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