How to Treat or Manage Shoulder Pain

Shoulder pain can affect your ability to lift objects from the ground or reach them over your head. The pain can emanate from fracture, dislocation, or overuse of your shoulder joint, leading to wear and tear of your joint. After an accurate diagnosis, you can treat or manage shoulder pain Leawood through rest, medication, and surgery.

Your specialist can perform a physical exam and imaging tests like X-rays to identify the cause of your shoulder pain.

Causes and symptoms of shoulder pain

Common causes of shoulder pain stem from repetitive motions, traumatic injuries, and diseases like arthritis. Depending on the cause, your shoulder pain can be sharp, dull, consistent, or occasional. You might experience symptoms like shoulder stiffness and limited range of motion.

Treatment options

Your doctor will create a treatment plan depending on the cause of the shoulder pain. You might need painkillers and rest if it is a minor issue, while surgery might be the only option for severe shoulder pain. The following are strategies that your specialist can use to offer relief.


Rest is important for recovery from shoulder pain. While you might be tempted to keep your shoulder inactive, your doctor might suggest you make small controlled movements. Avoid making sudden movements that might irritate your joints, causing pain. You can use a sling or brace to immobilize your shoulder.

while resting and taking painkillers, you can also engage in light physical therapy exercises to strengthen your shoulder joints.


Your doctor can prescribe different medications, including oral medicines, injections, and topical creams. Painkillers, muscle relaxants, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections, and nerve blocks can alleviate pain symptoms.


Surgery is necessary when your shoulder pain does not respond to conservative treatments like oral medications, injections, and physical therapy. If you have shoulder pain due to rotator cuff tears, your doctor can recommend minimally invasive arthroscopic surgery, which reduces the risk of infection and scarring.

In a severe case of osteoarthritis, you might undergo partial or total shoulder replacement surgery. You might need partial replacement surgery if one part of the joint is affected. If both parts of your shoulder joint are damaged, you will undergo total shoulder replacement surgery and receive artificial components to replace the damaged tissues.

How to manage shoulder pain at home

You can manage shoulder pain at home by getting enough rest and using painkillers. Using ice packs intermittently can help ease pain and swelling. Wear a brace or sling to immobilize your shoulder until you feel better.

When to see a doctor

You should see your doctor if the shoulder pain is persistent even after administering treatment. If you rest and use over-the-counter medicines but don’t see any improvement, you should contact your doctor to receive a more individualized treatment plan. 

If you have severe shoulder pain affecting your range of motion, visit Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance for treatment. The available team at the center will evaluate your condition and symptoms and recommend medications or surgery. Call or schedule your appointment online to improve your shoulder’s function.