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  • Writer's pictureYong Kang TCM

What is shoulder impingement?

Shoulder impingement is a condition characterized by pain and stiffness in the shoulder joint, usually caused by overuse, injury, or prolonged poor posture. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), shoulder impingement is related to liver qi stagnation, invasion of wind, cold, and dampness, and poor circulation of qi and blood. These factors lead to obstruction of the shoulder meridians and poor blood circulation, resulting in shoulder pain and stiffness. TCM treatment for shoulder impingement typically includes acupuncture, tuina massage, moxibustion, cupping, and herbal medicine. These therapies can improve local blood circulation and circulation of qi and blood, relieve shoulder pain and stiffness, and restore shoulder function.

Yong Kang TCM shoulder impingement

What Causes Shoulder Impingement in Mothers?

Yong Kang TCM shoulder impingement

Shoulder impingement can be caused by various factors, including age, gender, physical condition, exercise history, nutritional status, and genetic factors. In older individuals, the cartilage, tendons, and ligaments of the shoulder joint gradually wear and degenerate, increasing the risk of shoulder impingement. Additionally, women are more likely to develop shoulder impingement than men.


Exercise history and nutritional status are also associated with shoulder impingement. Overuse of the shoulder joint and improper posture can both lead to shoulder impingement. Inadequate intake of nutrients and water can also result in muscle and tendon atrophy and degeneration, exacerbating the symptoms of shoulder impingement.


In Traditional Chinese Medicine, shoulder impingement is also related to poor circulation of qi and blood, weak kidneys and waist, and phlegm-dampness blockage. Therefore, Traditional Chinese Medicine treatments for shoulder impingement typically focus on regulating qi and blood, supporting the body's constitution, and resolving phlegm and dampness. Treatment methods such as acupuncture, acoustic wave therapy, Fuyang Tou Jiu, herbal medicine, and aerobic cupping are commonly used to promote natural healing and recovery of the body.


How to determine if your mother has shoulder impingement?

Shoulder periarthritis typically presents as pain, stiffness, and limited movement in the shoulder. If your mother is experiencing these symptoms, it is possible that she has shoulder periarthritis. In addition, there are other symptoms of shoulder periarthritis, such as worsening shoulder pain at night or at rest, pain in the upper arm muscles, and restricted movement in the arm and hand. If your mother has these symptoms, it is recommended to seek diagnosis and treatment at a hospital or traditional Chinese medicine clinic. TCM practitioners will confirm the diagnosis through observation, listening, questioning, and palpation.

  1. Observation: Observe whether your mother's shoulder is swollen or red, and whether there is stiffness and limited movement in the shoulder. If these symptoms are present, it may be one of the manifestations of shoulder periarthritis.

  2. Listening: Listen for any odors or sounds from your mother's shoulder. Patients with shoulder periarthritis may have the odor of arthritis or the sound of joint friction.

  3. Questioning: Ask about your mother's physical condition, lifestyle habits, and symptoms in the shoulder. For example, whether she has overused her shoulder or maintained a certain posture for a long time, as these can lead to shoulder periarthritis.

  4. Palpation: Press on your mother's shoulder and observe whether there is pain, soreness, or other discomfort. If there is pain or discomfort in the shoulder, it may also be a symptom of shoulder periarthritis.

By comprehensively observing, listening, questioning, and palpating, it is possible to preliminarily determine whether your mother has shoulder periarthritis and proceed with further treatment.

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How can Traditional Chinese Medicine help mothers alleviate shoulder impingement?

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) offers various methods to help mothers alleviate pain caused by shoulder periarthritis, including acupuncture, moxibustion, aerobic cupping, tuina, and herbal medicine.

Yong Kang TCM acupuncture

Acupuncture, one of the classic therapies of TCM, stimulates acupuncture points by inserting needles into the skin to regulate the balance of yin and yang, and the flow of Qi and blood in the body, in order to treat diseases. Moxibustion is a therapy that applies medicine to acupuncture points through the skin, which can warm and activate meridians, promote blood circulation, resolve stasis, and relieve inflammation and swelling of the shoulder joint. It is very effective in relieving symptoms of shoulder periarthritis.


Aerobic Cupping is a therapy that combines cupping therapy and exercise. Inhaling and exhaling can infuse oxygen into the body while negative ions increase blood circulation around the shoulder joint, promote tissue repair and regeneration, and relieve pain and restore shoulder function.

Yong Kang TCM aerobic cupping

Tuina is a manual therapy that can promote lymphatic and blood circulation, relieve muscle tension and pain. Herbal medicine is used to treat shoulder periarthritis by selecting different Chinese herbal medicines according to the different symptoms of the patient, which can improve symptoms and promote body recovery and health.

Yong Kang TCM tuina

In addition, TCM also emphasizes dietary therapy, believing that diet is one of the important factors in treating shoulder periarthritis. TCM recommends that patients consume foods rich in vitamin C and calcium, such as green leafy vegetables, fruits, dairy products, etc., to enhance immune function and bone health. At the same time, it is necessary to avoid eating spicy and stimulating foods such as alcohol and tobacco, in order to alleviate the symptoms of shoulder periarthritis.


In summary, TCM offers a variety of methods to treat shoulder periarthritis, which can be targeted based on the patient's condition and individual differences. Patients need to actively cooperate with the treatment, follow the doctor's instructions, and pay attention to their daily diet and exercise, in order to promote recovery.



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