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What Do You Do When Your Shoulder Pops Out of Place?

I do spinal twists, twisting towards the shoulder that pops out of place. woman in seated spinal twist This stretches out the tight muscles and helps to make them more balanced.

 


My Experience


My shoulder joint used to pop out of place all of the time. I remember one time I was just brushing my teeth and it popped out of place. It really hurt and I had to wiggle it to get the joint back to where it should be. For many years I didn't know this was unusual since I had the condition of popping and subluxating (partial dislocating) joints all of my life. (See my section on popping jaws, knees and other joints for more on this).

I know now that my shoulder pops out of place because of muscular tension. Among a plethora of many orthopedic problems I've had, I used to have a twisted thorax. That means that even when my hips were facing forward my torso would be twisted to one side. My left shoulder used to come forward and my right shoulder used to go backward.

I corrected most of this problem eventually with yoga by doing poses that involved counter twists in the opposite direction. I also did yoga postures and trigger point therapy to relieve stress in one of my calves, which was another component to the problem. My muscles were so tight in my right calf that over time it caused my right shoulder to be pulled down and back, which in turn caused my left shoulder to go forward.

My right shoulder muscle was weak and stretched out of shape, while my left shoulder had become over developed and pulled forward. The muscle tension from my left shoulder would give me very bad headaches on the left side of my head. On my right side I developed temporomandibular joint pain and a frozen shoulder from the tension from my right calf. I also have a condition called thoracic outlet syndrome (TOS) in my left shoulder from the overdeveloped muscles in my shoulder. I have floaters in my left eye, I think from the muscular tension on my optic nerve.

My left shoulder still pulls forward, but not as much as it used to. I try to do a lot of stretches and yoga poses that stretch my arm backwards. I think if I do this enough, over time it will eventually put my shoulder back into place. So far it seems to be working.

The Treatments I've Found Helpful

1. I watch my posture, especially when sitting at the computer. I used to habitually lean forward and to the left while doing computer work. I know now that I was basically giving in to the contracted muscles on the front and left side of my body. In the short run it felt more comfortable to sit that way, and in the long run it just perpetuated my dysfunctional body alignment and kept those muscles in a contracted state.

2. I lay on the couch on my back and just let my left arm hang over the side and drop down to the floor away from my torso. I can feel a nice stretch when I do this. It is a good counter measure to sitting at the computer and having my arm in a forward position all of the time. I do this stretch on both sides, but I hold the stretch much longer on the left side because that is the shoulder that still tends to pull forward the most.

To make the stretch more intense, sometimes I hold a five pound weight in the hand that is dropped down to the floor. I also bought a weight bench in order to do this stretch with both arms at the same time. I just lay on the bench on my back, put my arms out to the side. Then I either just let my arms drop naturally to the floor or I put the hand weights in them to make the stretch more effective.

3. I do the doorway stretch. I stand in a doorway with my arms at out at right angles, hands upward and my forearms up against the door frame. Then I just lean forward and stay in that position for awhile. When I first started doing this I could almost always hear a loud "pop" noise from my shoulder as it snapped back into place. Now since I've been doing this awhile I don't hear it as often, which I think is a good thing. I think it means that the muscles around my shoulder joint are becoming more balanced and and my shoulder joint isn't out of place as much when I initiate the stretch.

4. I do spinal twisting poses in yoga. My shoulder pops because the muscles are tighter on the front of my body, pulling my shoulder inward. Twisting in the opposite direction helps to pull my shoulder back into place and reduces the popping sounds. My tight, forward shoulder is on my left side, to I twist toward the left, forcing my left shoulder backward into a more normal position.

 

 

 

Related Pages of My Site:

Popping Jaws, Knees and Other Joints - creaky knees
cracking necks and backs

TMJ: Diet and Exercise Treatment - covers the many factors that played a role on my recovery from temporomandibular joint disorder pain.

Alternative Treatments for Neck Pain - therapies I found helpful.

Foods for Fibromyalgia - diet changes I made that helped with muscle and joint pain.

Frozen Shoulders - reviews overlooked causes, treatment tips and exercises.

Fibromyalgia Therapies - tips that helped me to live pain free.

Visit my home page or my site map to use my search feature, and see information on connective tissue disorders and related features.

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