Cures for Cold Weather Shoulder PainCures for Cold Weather Shoulder Pain

By Jaseng Center for Alternative Medicine

Weather changes have a great influence on health. And at this time of year, the number of people who suffer from shoulder pain because of cold weather is on the rise. Excessive exposure to cold causes not only pain and damage to the skin, but also aches and pains in muscles, especially around the shoulders. People also complain of headaches, fever, dizziness, and other symptoms after coming in contact with the cold. But these symptoms usually last for only a short period of time, with a good nightís sleep or hot shower usually curing the worst of them.

The biggest problem with cold weather, however, is that it exacerbates shoulder pain that is already present and itís not so easy to get rid of.

In our high-stress society, fatigue and overwork are major causes of shoulder pain. Another culprit is dysfunction of the circulatory system or the sudden disturbance of the blood supply to the neck and shoulder area. Senior citizens suffer degenerative shoulder problems like arthritis, which make the muscles and tendons hard and stiff and cause excruciating pain. Sometimes, they even lose the use of their shoulders, arms, and hands.

So what can be done about these conditions? In Oriental medicine, taking herbs is regarded as one of the most popular and effective treatments for sore and aching shoulders. For anyone who has developed shoulder pain after spending many hours in a cold place or sleeping in a cold room, it is recommended to take herbs that keep the inner body warm.

One of the best herbs for this purpose is fang feng, whose Chinese characters literally mean to protect or defend against the wind. Fang feng is used to protect against or heal diseases caused by the wind, especially the cold winter wind. To maximize the effectiveness of this herb, sufferers are also recommended to undergo moxibustion treatment, as it helps muscles contracted by the cold to relax as well as warm up the rest of the body. In moxibustion treatments, herbs like Artemisia (wormwood) are dried, ground, and made into small punks that are burned just above the skin on the abdomen in a circular holder.

When people reach the age of 50, they have a very high chance of getting shoulder pain. As a matter of fact, Doctors or Oriental Medicine (OMDs) call this "ohship-gyun," of the disease that arises at the age of 50. These people are recommended to take an herb called shu di huang, which is a very good nutritional supplement for the tendons and muscles. Shu di huang also plays an important role in generating hormones the body needs and providing the whole body with the nutritive substance it lacks. Acupuncture, however, is not considered proper for those taking these herbs because it may cause them to be stricken by fatigue.

For those whose shoulder pain arises from a lack of blood production, an herb called dang gui is a great remedy. Not only does it help stimulate the manufacture of blood in the body, but it also purifies the existing blood. Moxibustion is also recommended to supplement the action of the herbs.

For those who have serious problems moving their arms or shoulders, the following physical therapy, which you can do on your own, is recommended.

First, sit on a chair or couch and move your arms in large circles.

Next, stand perpendicular to the wall with one hand on it (not facing the wall, turn 90 degrees) and "wall" (with your fingers) your hand up the wall as high as possible, moving closer to the wall as your hand reaches toward the ceiling if you are not in too much pain. Then walk them back down to shoulder height. Repeat this with your other arm and then do a few more sets.

While under treatment for shoulder pain, it would be wise to avoid eating meat. Instead, try eating fresh vegetables, sweet potatoes, potatoes, taro or fruits. These foods can help you excrete toxins better, purify the blood and intensify the function of the tendons and muscles.

By Jaseng Center for Alternative Medicine.

Jaseng Center for Alternative Medicine is one of the largest integrative medical facility with 10 medical practitioners and it is a branch medical office of Jaseng Hospital of Oriental Medicine, which is the largest oriental medical hospital specializing in non surgical treatment of spine and joint condition. Please visit our website for more info at or

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