When you’re dealing with shoulder pain, it can become difficult to move any part of your arm. Even the simplest of tasks can become frustrating. Thanks to modern medicine, you now have access to on-demand doctors that can help simplify your road to recovery. These physicians can diagnose your shoulder pain and craft a recovery plan to restore your mobility. All of this can be done from the comfort of your home using a smartphone or tablet.
What is a Doctor on Demand?
A doctor on demand is a digital healthcare provider that gives you:
- An easier way to make appointments
- The ability to be seen by a medical expert sooner
- The option to get almost any non-emergency treatment you need
These days, more people are seeking out mobile health professionals for a variety of practical reasons including:
- Following better Covid safety protocols
- Reducing transportation costs
- Getting access to medical specialists, regardless of location
- Accessing health information and making appointments with ease
- Improving communication speed with care teams
A Doctor on Demand for Shoulder Pain: How Does it Work and What are the Advantages?
The goal of standard and digital physical therapy for shoulder pain, if done consistently, is to increase muscle strength in and around the shoulder muscles, increase shoulder mobility and decrease pain. However, there are some significant advantages of choosing a digital recovery program with a doctor on demand, which include:
- Getting a virtual assessment to determine the source of your shoulder pain
- 1:1 real-time meetings with your digital doctor
- Meeting w/ your care coordinator who helps you get set up and answers any questions you may have
- Access to multi-specialty doctors, even for those living in remote areas
- Weekly digital physical therapy sessions and faster recovery times
- At-home daily program to help you better understand your shoulder pain
- Mindfulness techniques and nutrition tips to help reduce pain and inflammation
What Your Doctor on Demand May Recommend
You don’t have to resign yourself to a life with shoulder pain. Doctors on demand for shoulder pain will recommend several at-home treatments designed to limit the amount of pain you’re in while also restoring some of your mobility. These include the following:
The RICE acronym stands for “rest, ice, compression, elevation.” If you’re facing a long-lasting shoulder injury, these behaviors can lessen the amount of pain you deal with daily. You can also integrate heat therapy into your daily care cycle, as heat can loosen any inflamed tendons that may be limiting your mobility.
Anti-inflammatory medication and pain medication can help you cope with the worst parts of shoulder pain. The anti-inflammatory effects of common household medicines can reduce the amount of swelling you see in your shoulder. Similarly, pain medications make even frozen shoulders a little easier to move. However, you should not take more of these medications than is recommended or prescribed. Doing so can put your health at risk.
When appropriate, your physical therapist will recommend low-impact and range-of-motion exercises. These movements are carefully designed to prevent the risk of reaggravating your shoulder injury. When performed consistently, exercise routines are meant to improve range-of-motion, muscle strength and decrease shoulder pain.
Aside from physical therapists, your doctor may also refer you to specialists in other fields of medicine such as occupational therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, rheumatology, orthopedics, etc., in order to collaborate on a treatment plan for you.
Why Does Your Shoulder Hurt?
Your shoulder is a complicated joint that connects to ligaments, tendons, and cartilage. These connections allow your shoulder its broad range of movement. However, with so many working parts in the area, it’s not always easy to determine why your shoulder may start to hurt.
That said, if you find a doctor on demand for shoulder pain who can diagnose your condition, they will likely be able to trace it back to the following:
A frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is stiff and difficult to move. If you’re contending with a frozen shoulder, you’ll likely experience twinges of pain coming from your shoulder joint that grow worse over time.
Frozen shoulders tend to worsen the longer they go untreated. They’re most common in parties who’ve suffered shoulder injuries in the past or conditions that limit the mobility of a person’s arm. While this condition tends not to beget nerve damage or even long-lasting shoulder immobility, it can still prove exceptionally uncomfortable, especially before the “thawing” stage of the process.
Rotator Cuff Injuries
Your rotator cuff is less of a cuff and more of a collection of muscles and tendons. These tendons are what allow your shoulder its full range of movement while holding your humerus in place. Muscle tears throughout your rotator cuff become more common with age and can cause you a considerable amount of pain if they go untreated.
People of any age can endure shoulder arthritis. Because your shoulder is a complicated joint, it can take a significant amount of wear and tear. If you were an athlete or work in a position that requires considerable shoulder movement, you might develop osteoarthritis in your shoulder as soon as your late twenties.
In shoulder arthritis, the cartilage throughout your shoulder starts to wear away. Over time, the bones making up your shoulder can come into more direct contact with one another. That contact can be excruciating. It can also result in swelling as well as the development of bone spurs. If you don’t work to have this condition treated, your shoulder may stiffen to the point where you’re no longer able to move it.
Collaborating with a Physical Therapist
If you’ve been dealing with long-term shoulder pain, talk to a digital recovery professional about the benefits of physical therapy. You can complete variousl exercises at home to improve your shoulder’s mobility and reduce its pain. Some of the best include:
- Pendulum stretches
- Across-body stretches
- Neck releases
- Chest expansions
Consult a medical professional before trying any of these exercises. If you attempt one of these exercises without understanding the circumstances that have led to your shoulder pain, you risk making your condition worse.
Don’t learn to live with your shoulder pain. Let professionals guide you down a path towards recovery instead. You can find a doctor on demand for shoulder pain without leaving your home.
PeerWell can connect you with a digital recovery professional. Your consultations can take place in a virtual space and on your schedule. One of our team members will intake your medical history and help you create the recovery program that best restores the mobility of your shoulder.
To schedule your first consultation, reach out to one of our PeerWell team members today.