Using Your Heating Pad For Shoulder Pain
Have you ever been outside working in the spring time, shoveling in your garden or doing some other kind of work and then all of a sudden your shoulder hurts?
It happens to a lot of us, especially as we get older.
But you can use a lava sand heating pad to help relieve your shoulder pain by applying it to your shoulder for 20 to 30 minutes at a time, then waiting for 2 hours, then apply the heating pad again.
Read on to find out some more tips to help relieve your shoulder pain.
What causes shoulder pain?
Before we got into treating your shoulder pain, we should probably spend a little bit of time covering what might be causing your shoulder pain.
First, as I've stated before, we don't claim to be medical professionals on this site.
We are merely attempting to provide information to you, the reader, in the best way possible.
We are in no way trying to replace your local doctor.
If you are having trouble with shoulder pain and it never seems to go away, please go see your local physician as soon as you can so they can check you out and make sure you are getting the proper treatment.
What we describe here is merely to help with the pain.
Your local physician should be able to give you additional information.
With that being said, let's go into what might be causing your shoulder pain.
According to the Mayo Clinic:
"Shoulder pain may arise from the shoulder joint itself or from any of the many surrounding muscles, ligaments or tendons. Shoulder pain that comes from the joint usually worsens with activities or movement of your arm or shoulder.
Various diseases and conditions affecting structures in your chest or abdomen, such as heart disease or gallbladder disease, also can cause shoulder pain. Shoulder pain that arises from another structure is called referred pain. Referred shoulder pain usually doesn't worsen when you move your shoulder."
So as the Mayo Clinic quotes from above, there are many different things that can cause shoulder pain.
First, you could be having problems with the muscles, ligaments and tendons.
In this case, you are going to see the pain recurring when you do physical activities or movements that involves your shoulders.
For example, I've had problems with my shoulders when playing basketball.
If the problems continue, I can assume that this is probably going to be a problem with the muscles or ligaments.
Or if you are someone that works out in the garden on a regular basis and you start to feel your shoulder hurting, that again could be specific problems with the shoulder.
On the other hand, you can have pain that has nothing to do with your shoulder (referred pain).
This is going to be a little harder to diagnose.
The pain won't get worse as you move your shoulder.
In this case, it could be many different things and you should go to your doctor to get it diagnosed.
We won't be talking about managing the pain of this referred pain in this article.
Since this pain is not coming from the muscles, tendons or ligaments, applying heat to the area might not relieve the pain.
But in the first case, the lava sand heating pad can help to relieve the pain, depending on how you want to treat it.
When to visit the hospital
Once you've noticed the pain in your shoulder, you don't necessarily need to visit a hospital.
But there are a few instances where you should immediately go to the hospital.
Those include, but are not limited to:
- When the joint appears to be deformed
- When you can't move the joint or move the arm away from the body
- When you have intense pain or severe swelling
You may not be in as much of a hurry to get to the hospital if you are experiencing swelling, redness, tenderness around the area.
If you are still able to move your arm with swelling and tenderness, then the shoulder pain is probably not severe enough to go to the emergency room.
How to relieve should pain with a lava sand heating pad
Now that we understand shoulder pain a little bit more (especially what is referred pain and not), let's talk about how to relieve that pain.
The lava sand heating pad is great in a situation like combating your should pain because you can use it as either a heating pad or a cold pack.
And both of these help to relieve different types of pain.
According to John Hopkins Medicine:
"When an injury or inflammation, such as tendonitis or bursitis occurs, tissues are damaged. Cold numbs the affected area, which can reduce pain and tenderness. Cold can also reduce swelling and inflammation."
If you have tissue damage or the area is inflamed, then cold treatment might be the best treatment for your injury.
The cold treatment is also good for brand new injuries that need immediate treatment for pain and swelling.
For example, after basketball players play a game, they will typically sit in a ice bath because it reduces pain and tenderness and also because it covers specifics areas that could be injured while playing their basketball game.
So it helps them to recover, but also gives them the opportunity to heal.
Heating pads are good for recurring injuries, or places that seem to hurt on a regular basis during exercise.
Heat can also help your body from getting stiff after a workout.
If, for example, you have to go into the office right after working out, it might be preferable for you to spend some time with a heating pad on some of your joint areas like shoulders and knees before going into work.
That way, you won't have to grunt your way around the office all day.
And the lava sand heating pad can help you work your way through these injuries or exercises.
To treat your body with a heating pad, you first need to put your lava sand heating pad into the microwave.
For your first time, try putting it in the microwave for about 2 to 3 minutes.
If you start off with 2 minutes for your first time, you should be able to get a pretty good idea what the heat level is going to be.
Putting it in for 3 minutes should give you more than enough heat to last through the recommended amount of time.
Once you've heated up the heating pad in the microwave, then place it on your shoulder.
Depending on how hot the heating pad is, you might want to place it in a towel before placing it on your skin.
With the heat treatment, if you place it right on your skin, you run the chances of giving yourself a rash.
And we want to avoid rashes (we shouldn't treat the area with a heating pad until the skin is healed of the rash).
Once you've placed the heating pad in a towel, then place it on your shoulder and leave it there between 20 and 30 minutes.
Leaving the heating pad on your shoulder any longer than this can again hurt the skin in the area and possibly lead to rashes.
After 30 minutes, take the lava sand heating pad off and set it aside for 2 hours.
If you are still having pain after 2 hours, heat the lava sand heating pad up for 3 minutes again and put it on your shoulder.
Repeat this throughout the day until you are ready to go to bed.
It is important that you don't leave the heating pad on your body while you are going to sleep.
So make sure to put the heating pad away before you fall asleep.
For cold packs, place your lava sand heating pad in the freezer and leave it in there for a few hours.
When you are ready to treat the hurt shoulder, take the heating pad out of the freezer and place it on your shoulder.
Leave it there for up to 30 minutes and then place it back in the freezer.
Just like with the heating pad, wait 2 hours and if the pain persists, get it back out of the freezer and place it on your shoulder for 30 minutes.
Repeat throughout the day as the pain persists.
Using either hot or cold treatment with the lava sand heating pad should do a lot towards helping you to recover from your shoulder pain.
When to use hot or cold for your shoulder pain
As we mentioned above, there are certain instances where heat is the preferred method, while there are others where cold is preferred.
In the case where you have a new injury, then cold is what you should be using.
For example, if you are out playing basketball with friends and someone hits you hard on the shoulder during the a layup, that would be a time to use the cold treatment.
Or if you are playing football with a friend and someone tackles you right on your shoulder, that would be another instance where you should use the cold pack for the injury.
But if you regularly have a should ache you go outside and dig in the garden, then you should treat that with heat.
Because heat is good for recurring injuries.
If you keep this in mind when you are treating a new or old injury, you should be able to do a lot towards your recovery.
Whether you have a new should injury or an old one, the lava sand heating pad will do a lot towards helping you recover.
The heat will help the blood flow towards the injured area and will also help to reduce any stiffness you might experience from working out.
The cold will help with new injuries by slowing the blood flow to the area and reducing any inflammation or swelling.
And a lava sand heating pad can help you apply both hot or cold to your injured shoulder.
But always keep in mind that whichever treatment you decide to choose, make sure you are visiting your doctor to get checked out.
Because no matter what advice we are giving you here, we can't check your injury for you.
The best idea is for you to visit your doctor and have them check your injury out and make sure all you need is a little hot or cold treatment.