If you suffer a shoulder injury, it's better to be safe than sorry. While you may assume it'll heal on its own, you never really know if this will happen. If it doesn't, you may come to find that delaying treatment has made matters worse.
A dislocated shoulder, for example, is a serious injury that requires immediate medical attention. Your medical team can run a variety of tests, including an X-ray, to get a better idea of what's going on.
Depending on the severity and type of injury, the following treatment options could come into play:
- Closed reduction: This is when your doctor gently attempts to move your shoulder back into its proper position. If they're successful, you'll immediately feel better.
- Surgery: It's not always required, but surgery may be necessary if your doctor doesn't feel that the area will heal on its own. This is often the result of a shoulder that is weak or severely injured.
- Immobilization: With the help of a sling or splint, you can keep your shoulder immobilized as to give it time to heal. It's possible that you'll need to wear a sling or splint for a period of several weeks.
When the time comes, you'll want to partake in rehabilitation to strengthen your shoulder with the idea of protecting against future problems.
If you dislocated your shoulder at work, report the injury and incident to your employer. From there, if your medical team suggests that you avoid work until your injury heals, you should file a claim for workers' compensation benefits. This will provide you with some money while you recover.