RICE Treatment Method
For many injuries, it can be true that less is more. When it comes to a rotator cuff injury, there is an effective treatment method that you can implement straight away if you want to decrease your shoulder pain.
It is not only effective when it comes to easing the pain associated with a rotator cuff injury but it can also prove effective for treating any sort of repetitive strain injury.
When it comes to completely recovering from any repetitive strain injury, the most effective pathway to recovery is to implement strengthening exercises to improve weakness and the return to normal range of motion and eliminate stiffness.
Without knowing exactly which exercises will help your injury, choosing to implement the R.I.C.E. treatment method is not only recommended as a first step but it should be used as a complementary treatment method to a specific exercise program.
So what is the term R.I.C.E. short for?
It means Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. The purpose of each of these individuals steps are to aid in the reduction of swelling and inflammation of your rotator cuff muscles and tendons. Let’s go into further details about what exactly each step involves.
1. Rest – Besides the obvious of not making your injury even worse, there are 2 reasons why resting is vital after your suffer a rotator cuff injury. First, it protects your injured tendon, muscles and ligaments from further damage such as a complete tear of the rotator cuff and secondly, it allows your body’s natural defence mechanisms to “kick in” and start the natural repair process.
2. Ice – Any person who has taken a basic first aid course knows that the first thing you do after someone sustains a muscle or tendon injury is apply ice. Ice immediately numbs the area and helps control pain. The application of Ice decreases the amount of blood flow to the injured area and helps decrease swelling. If you don’t have any ice packs, a bag of frozen vegetables will do the trick. To decrease the chances of tissue and skin damage, it’s recommended that you only apply ice for 15 minutes.
3. Compression – Applying pressure, aka Compression aids in the reduction of inflammation plus it can provide temporary pain relief. All that is required is an elastic bandage which gets wrapped up and around your shoulder region. How do you know if the bandage is too tight? You’ll feel a throbbing sensation in your shoulder if the bandage is wrapped too tight. When this happens, re-wrap the bandage with less pressure.
4. Elevation – Although this step doesn’t really apply to a rotator cuff injury but is more so directed towards limbs and injuries that are below heart level. Elevating your arm, or leg above heart level can also decrease swelling and inflammation.
In taking proactive measures and implementing the RICE treatment methods, you can dramitcally increase your rate of recovery as opposed to doing nothing at all.
If your shoulder pain does not subside in a couple of days, it’s best advised to seek medical attention as there could be something more serious going on.
But for those who are suffering from a rotator cuff injury and want to repair and recover from it at home without the need for any medical intervention or the use of expensive medical gadgets…click on the button below where a video will show you how!