The Immediate Steps That Should Be Taken When You Have an Accident and Hurt Your Shoulder

The Immediate Steps That Should Be Taken When You Have an Accident and Hurt Your Shoulder

The wastebaskets at home are filled to the brim and you’ve decided that ‘the trash must go’. You pick up the heavy trash can and as you stagger towards the main garbage disposal site near your home, you bump your shoulder against the door.  The pain is instantaneous and intense. And it should not be ignored at any cost. However, there is no particular need to panic.

Following are some remedial measures you can take to get rid of the pain and the swelling if you were to have injured your shoulder.

o   Dislocated shoulder

If you dislocate your shoulder, it is vital you head to the nearest emergency room of at least a secondary level medical facility. They will run x-rays and determine the extent of the damage.  Here, the key issue is that it should not be a recurring injury.

If you dislocate your shoulder regularly, it means that the (often blunt force) trauma you have suffered (during strenuous contact sports) has made your shoulder prone to dislocation. This is why the need of the hour is to stabilize it by not moving it at all until you have been admitted to the hospital.
Sometimes, dislocations might require a straightforward ‘reduction procedure’ and you will go home the same day. Albeit with your arm in a cast for the four to six weeks, it will require for the injury to heal properly.

However, if it’s a recurring issue, then you might need stabilization surgery so that the chances of recurrence are kept to a bare minimum.  These days invasive surgery is used in very rare cases, with only a few smalls incisions being deemed to be sufficient for the task at hand. However, physical therapy might continue for an extended period (4-6 months) and even long after the cast has been removed.

o   Rest

Resting the injured shoulder is the ideal treatment for the nagging shoulder pain that follows an injury. More often than not, the root cause of such pain is ‘overexertion’.  Trying to lift heavy weights is a prime example of overexertion, especially if you are not used to such strenuous physical activity in the first place. If the issue is work-related, then it may have something to do with your posture and take immediate steps to make your workplace healthier!

Alternatively, if it is due to over exercising, then you should stop exercising and refrain from hectic physical activity until your pain has disappeared. You should also consider the root cause of the pain.  Such as the fact that your mattresses and your pillows may be too soft. Here, instead of any therapeutic benefit, soft pillows might make a bad situation worse.

o   Use an ice pack on your injured shoulder

Applying ice is an effective treatment for all kinds of acute injuries including blunt force trauma, shoulder strains, and even sprains. This is because cold ice packs can constrict blood vessels reducing the blood flow substantially.  Apart from that, they also numb the nerve fibers as well.

A cold compress, when applied to the tender part of the shoulder, can lead to a substantial reduction in the swelling and accompanying pain.  An ice pack should be applied for 10 to 15 minutes every hour, hour after hour until the pain and swelling subside.

  • Actively compressing the ice against the shoulder with the help of an elastic support or even a bandage will also help control the inflammation to a great extent.
  • Always wrap the ice or even the frozen gel packs (if you are using those) in a thin towel to prevent frostbite, on the skin.

o    Use some ‘over the counter’ drugs

There are many non-steroidal anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs related short-term solutions such as naproxen, ibuprofen, or even the ubiquitous aspirin. These can help you deal with both pain and inflammation in your injured shoulder. These medicines are commonly available at drug stores.

However, a word to the wise. These medicines can be very harsh on your kidneys, stomach, and liver. This is why it is considered a good practice to not to use them for more than a fortnight at the most.  Furthermore, these medications should always be taken with food and after consulting your GP.

That’s right. It is important to take your doctor into confidence whenever you are starting a new medication regimen and also inform him or her regarding any allergies you may have. Moreover, you should also tell your physician about any other medications you may have been taking for other issues.

Regarding dosage, it is prudent to follow the instructions on the bottle or blister pack. And in case of any confusion, always take the advice of your physician. You can make use of a reliable telemedicine platform to schedule an online appointment with your GP instead of visiting the medical facility.

As with all medical issues and injuries, self-medication and treatments can also backfire and make a bad situation worse. This is why your first course of action, after hurting your shoulder, should be to get to a medical facility, as soon as possible.

Disclaim: The effectiveness from using these foods on certain problems and diseases will be depended on the body condition of the applicant.

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The Immediate Steps That Should Be Taken When You Have an Accident and Hurt Your Shoulder
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