How To Fix A Dislocated Shoulder? Fast And Effective Tips

Are you suffering from the nagging pain of a dislocated shoulder? According to the National Institutes of Health, among all major joint dislocations, 50% of the cases pertain to shoulder dislocation.

In this article, we take you through how to fix a dislocated shoulder and the various relief techniques.

What Is A Dislocated Shoulder?

A dislocated shoulder is a condition in which your upper arm bone comes out of place from your shoulder socket. Some of the common symptoms of shoulder dislocation include:

Treating a dislocated shoulder

  • Pain in your upper arm and shoulder that gets worse when you move them
  • Numbness and weakness
  • Deformity of the shoulder

In case you feel that you have dislocated your shoulder, never make the mistake of treating it on your own. Get medical help as early as possible, without losing time.

Things To Do While You Are Waiting For The Treatment

  • Gently hold an ice pack to your shoulder. Continue doing this for up to 20 minutes every 2 to 3 hours. Alternatively, you can also use a bag of frozen peas wrapped in a tea towel.
  • Put your arm in a sling. The other option is to support your affected arm using a towel.
  • Take paracetamol to get relief from pain. Make sure that you follow the dosage instructions on the packet.

Also, stay away from practices such as moving your upper arm or putting your arm back in yourself.

How A Shoulder Dislocation Is Diagnosed?

As the first step, the healthcare provider will check whether there is tenderness, swelling, or deformity in the affected area. They will also check for signs of nerve or blood vessel injury. You may also have to undergo an X-ray. It will help detect the dislocation caused to the shoulder joint or other damages. 

Treatment Methods For A Dislocated Shoulder

For treating a dislocated shoulder, the following are some of the common treatment methods.

1. Closed Reduction

This procedure involves some gentle maneuvers that aid in moving the shoulder bones back to the earlier position. However, before moving the shoulder bones, a muscle relaxant or sedative, or, rarely, a general anesthetic is given depending on the intensity of pain and swelling.

Once the shoulder bones are back to their original position, you will feel relieved from the excruciating pain almost immediately.

2. Surgery

Surgery is the next option for people suffering from weak shoulder joints or ligaments and those who have gone through repeated shoulder dislocations despite strengthening and rehabilitation.

Though it is a rare occurrence, there are cases where damaged nerves or blood vessels might require surgery. Young athletes also benefit from surgery as it cuts down the risk of re-injury.

3. Immobilization

Once a person undergoes closed reduction, wearing a special splint or sling for a couple of weeks will help stop the shoulder from moving during the healing period.

4. Medication

A pain reliever or a muscle relaxant might offer relief till the time the shoulder heals.

5. Rehabilitation

After the sling or splint is removed, a rehabilitation program is found to be effective in restoring the range of motion, strength, and stability of the shoulder joint.

Tips To Get Relief From A Dislocated Shoulder

Once the treatment for the shoulder dislocation is over, you can try the below tips to get relief from the discomfort. These techniques will also speed up the healing process.

  • Rest your shoulder – Never make the mistake of repeating that action that caused your shoulder to dislocate. Also, limit heavy lifting and or overhead activity until you feel better.
  • Maintain the range of motion of your shoulder – After a couple of days, your healthcare provider might instruct you to do gentle exercises. The objective is to maintain your shoulder’s range of motion. The danger of being inactive is that it can cause the joints to stiffen.

Related Topic: Understanding Muscle Dislocation – Causes, Symptoms And Treatments


Hope the article provides lesser-known information about how to fix a dislocated shoulder. Make sure that you follow the above relief techniques for a fast recovery.  Also, once the injury heals and you regain fitness, keep doing exercise daily. Shoulder stretches and a shoulder-strengthening and stability program will aid in preventing the occurrence of another dislocation.

About the Author

Nicole Carter is a dedicated and passionate nutritionist, committed to helping individuals achieve their health and wellness goals through the power of proper nutrition. With a Bachelor's degree in Nutritional Science and years of practical experience.

Leave a Comment