How to Treat Back Pain Under Left Shoulder Blade (Scapula)?

Any amount of pain in your back should never be ignored. It could be the sign of a serious issue or something small.

What causes pain below my left shoulder blade? There are a variety of reasons that you can be experiencing back pain under left shoulder blade.

If you are weightlifting, have a job that requires lots of back use or just everyday wear and tear.


What Causes Back Pain Under Left Shoulder Blade?

Back pain under left shoulder blade can occur from any number of things. your shoulder blades are two triangle shaped bones located at the top of your back.

Shoulder blade pain can be experienced above, within, over or under the scapula. Here we are going to look at what can cause pain below left shoulder blade.

1. Injury

Exercising or lifting incorrectly can cause serious damage to your back. Injuring your shoulder blade is easy to do. The pain associated with this injury is incredibly difficult to handle.

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You could tear a muscle which results in sharp pain under left shoulder blade if you are lifting incorrectly.

2. Aging

This is an unavoidable part of life. Unfortunately, with aging comes health issues. As the aging process happens you should begin to take extra care.

Even the slightest of falls on your back or side can end up with pain in the upper back left side.

3. Wrong sleeping position

Sleeping in the wrong position is one of the leading causes of back pain under left shoulder blade. The way you contort your body in your bed has a direct correlation to the way you will feel in the morning.

4. Cold or flu

Body ache is the most common symptom of both a cold and the flu. Depending on how severe your case is, you may experience more acute pain below the left shoulder blade. Your entire body will probably feel as if there are weights sitting on it until your symptoms subside.

4. Dislocation

Your shoulder can be dislocated from impact or being pulled in an odd direction. It becomes dislocated when the shoulder leaves the socket. This is extremely painful and may possibly have some residual effects.

5.Frozen shoulder

Synovial fluid is a crucial component to shoulder health. It allows your shoulder to move freely in the joint without rubbing. If you do not have enough then you may have some back pain under left shoulder blade.

6. Fracture

A shoulder fracture is one of the most painful types of shoulder pains. This will encompass the entire shoulder area. It will be a sharp pain all around and make it very difficult to move.

7. Bursitis

The bursae are located between your bones and muscles and they are filled with fluid. They act as cushions when you contract or relax your muscles. Inflated bursae can cause significant pain. If you have experienced a shoulder injury and your bursae was affected, then you will have back pain under left shoulder blade.

8. Torn rotator cuff

Your rotator cuff is a very durable piece of your body. But, it can be damaged from overuse, spraining or straining. This can cause you shoulder blade pain.

9. Compressed nerve

This is also known as a pinched nerve and can cause sharp pain under the left shoulder blade.

10. Trigger points

These are when your muscle develops painful specific areas on your shoulder blade. They are also known as knots and form from overuse and strain. When touched, these areas can cause severe pain.

11. Subscapularis inflammation

The subscapularis is the muscle that helps you to move your arm anticlockwise or inwards. When inflamed pain gathers in your shoulder region and can take a while to cure.

12. Impingement syndrome

This is a condition that results from excessive strain on your shoulder blade. This is when your bursae and tendons become inflamed. This can also lead to injury in your rotator cuff.

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This can cause stabbing pain under left shoulder blade and leave you out of commission for a while.

13. Disc disease

Compression of nerves in the neck due to a collapsed or displaced disc can result in back pain under left shoulder blade.

You may also experience pain in your neck or tingling or numbness down your arms to your fingers.

  14. Heart conditions

This is more commonly seen in women; shoulder pain can be sometimes a result of a heart condition. Heart attacks, pericarditis or aortic dissection can cause back pain under left shoulder blade.


Home Treatments to Relieve Back Pain Under Your Left Shoulder Blade

 There are plenty of things that you can do at home to help alleviate any shoulder pain you are experiencing. It is important to be aware of what causes your pain so that it can be treated correctly.

If your pain does not subside in a few days of treatment, it is important to seek a medical professional. Below we will discuss some of the various treatments for back pain under left shoulder blade.

1. Enough rest

Sleeping and resting is a cure for almost anything. It is very important in the healing process.  if you are experiencing pain in the upper back left side, then take things slow.

2.Cold and hot compresses

Applying a cold pack on your shoulder can help ease the pain in your shoulder. This is very effective when your pain is caused by inflammation. The compress works to soothe the muscles, so they relax.

3. Stress

A person under stress will feel more body pain than a person who is relaxed. Taking it easy is very important. Find different ways to help your body relax at the end of the day.

4. Supplements

The stores are filled with different vitamins and nutritional supplements you can take that will accelerate the recovery process and help you regain the use of your shoulder. Be sure to consult a professional before taking any supplements.

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5. Yoga and exercises

Low-intensity exercises can also help alleviate the pain. Stretching will help the muscle get loose before you use it and prevent any further injuries to it.

6. Weight control

Overweight people have a higher risk of suffering from shoulder pains. The extra body weight they carry puts more stress on the body and muscles.

Losing weight can make the body less stressed and alleviate a lot of the issues you are experiencing.

7. Spinal manipulation

Spinal manipulation is a great alternative to medical treatment that is regarded as a safe treatment option with little chance of any negative side effects since no drugs are used.

8. Massage

Massage therapy is another no-risk method for patients suffering from back pain under left shoulder blade. It can help with pain caused by poor posture, overstretching, straining, or even sleeping awkwardly.

Some of the common types of massages include pressure point massage, Swedish massage, and shiatsu massage.

9. Acupuncture

This traditional Chinese method of healing helps reduce pain and inflammation. It also increases energy flow.

Regarded as one of the most popular old Chinese traditions, acupuncture is widely used today in not only pain relief, but also to reduce stress.

10. Herbs

Herbal remedies are a natural way to reduce inflammation and help healing move faster. This is due to the antioxidants contained in them.

Pomegranate, berries, and acai are all excellent examples of herbs that are filled with antioxidants and can help with back pain under left shoulder blade.


Stretches to Relieve Pain Under Left Shoulder Blade

 There are a number of different stretches you can do at home or work to help with your back pain. Here we will mention a few of them:

1.Improve your workstation

Ensure your feet are flat on the ground and knees are bent at a 90-degree angle, the back is straight, arms are bent at the elbow at 90 degrees, the monitor is at eye level, and your mouse is close to your keyboard.

2. Correct your posture

Ear, shoulder, and hip joint should be aligned when sitting with good posture. Shoulders should not be slouched, and your head should not be tilted.

3. Massage the area

Lay your shoulder on the massage ball and roll on it with the weight of your body.

4. Stretch the shoulders

Intertwine your fingers together, lean back, and hunch your upper body as far back as possible, push your hand as far away from you as possible.

In this position, you can move around to feel other areas of the upper back become stretched.

5. Stretch the thoracic spine

Have a foam roller underneath your shoulders and lay on it. Keep your ribs downward, but don’t arch your back too much. Keep your hands behind your head in order to support it. Roll gently on the roller.

Stabbing pain under left shoulder blade can ruin your day. The first thing to do to treat,  is to know what causes this pain.

Your shoulder blades are an intricate part of your daily life and should be treated with care and speed. Make sure to see a medical professional if your pain does not subside after the home treatments or before you try them.


Sources:
Haydar, A. A., Morgan-Hughes, G., & Roobottom, C. (2008, July 21). Investigating severe interscapular pain [Abstract]. The BMJ, 337, a688 Retrieved from http://www.bmj.com/content/337/bmj.a688
Lollino, N., Brunocilla, P. R., Poglio, F., Vannini, E., Lollino, S., & Lancia, M. (2012, May). Non-orthopaedic causes of shoulder pain: What the shoulder expert must remember [Abstract]. Musculoskeletal Surgery, 96(Suppl 1), S63–S68. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22528847
van Middelkoop, M., Rubinstein, S. M., Verhagen, A. P., Ostelo, R. W., Koes, B. W., & van Tulder, M. W. (2010, April). Exercise therapy for chronic nonspecific low-back pain [Abstract]. Best Practices Research Clinical Rheumatology, 24(2), 193–204. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20227641

Dr. Mark Williams, MD

Dr. Mark Williams is a leader in alternative and integrated medicines. He is a medical writer and reviewer at Daily Health Cures. He received his medical degree in 1988. Mark brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Daily Health Cures editorial team. He is a natural health advisor and provides a variety of alternative healing techniques in his practice.