Shoulder Pain: 3 Things That Surprisingly DON’T Help Ease It

Shoulder Pain

Shoulder Pain

Are you currently suffering from shoulder pain?

It’s one of the greatest mysteries of being 50+: the sudden onset of shoulder pain and stiffness that often creeps up on people with no warning and no explanation.

Sometimes it just happens. I’ve had a number of patients come to see me and say things like…

“I just woke up one morning with a pain in my neck and shoulders. I thought it’d go away but it’s starting to annoy me now!”

Watch this video to learn some common at-home exercises you can do for shoulder pain. Click here.


“At first my shoulder felt stiff when I woke up. I didn’t think much of it at the time, like with any other aches and pains they usually ease off after a few days. Now my shoulder has become tighter and it’s interfering with my day. I can’t even reach for my seatbelt or my wallet in my back pocket without it feeling painful and stiff.”

And because it can happen without warning, people usually try a number of options before deciding to come to see a physical therapist, when looking for ways to end shoulder pain…

  • 1. Painkillers
  • 2. Rest and time
  • 3. Relaxing spa style massages

Do any of these ‘solutions’ sound familiar?

Here’s why none of them ever work in the long run:


The thing with painkillers is that they might ease the pain for an hour or so, but all the Advil and anti-inflammatory tablets do is MASK the pain- they don’t get to the root cause of your ache and pain.

When painkillers wear off and you go grab another two, the problem is still there and you’re still left feeling frustrated with very tight muscles, or a stiff shoulder.

They do DON’T solve the problem, they only cover it up.

Do Rest and Time work for shoulder pain?

It’s a common thing to think that resting your shoulder will fix the pain because that seemed to work as a kid or even a young adult, but the thing is… that’s not you anymore, with time and MORE rest, your muscles become tighter and your joints become stiffer. Just like if you leave your car sitting in the driveaway for a few months. When you get back in to drive it again, it’s unlikely that it’ll feel smooth right away.

Your joints and muscles are designed to move and your body gets stronger the more you keep it active.

And that’s why it’s crucial that you get your shoulder joints moving to reduce any stiffness, to help it feel more relaxed so you can really begin to move without pain again. It helps to know specific movements to do and how often prescribed specifically for your case.

Relaxing, spa-style massages for shoulder pain

As amazing as these feelings, these types of massages will never work. Sure they will for a few hours, maybe even days but it comes back. So you return again and this time sign up for a membership to the spa place because it “will help you save money”. Fast-forward 6 months and you have a bank of massages you haven’t used so you start asking friends to take some off your hands… Sound familiar? ‘Cause I’ve heard it before.

Now it’s not the girl’s fault at all. Those types of massage therapists aren’t trained to get to the root cause of your problem- the pressure applied to your muscles won’t ever be quite right.

And when they tell you that they can feel ‘knots’ in your shoulders- every person over the age of 45 has knots and tension in their shoulder muscles (in fact most people do regardless of age!)… but it’s not always an issue or even the source of your pain.

This is where we can help you.

We don’t recommend popping painkillers if your pain isn’t gone after 5 days.

We’ll give you personalized exercises and stretches that will be done safely when we know you’re ready for them. This is coupled with hands-on therapy done by experts trained to know precisely where, when, and how much pressure to apply to the problem area.

We want to help you get back to being active and on the go as quickly as possible.

If you’d like to know ways to put a stop to annoying, daily, irritating shoulder pain, click here to download your free report:

Nick Hunter, PT, DPT

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