How to Heal Wrist & Shoulder Pain

Wrist and shoulder pain can come from a variety of different reasons. The most common reasons for wrist and shoulder pain are from arthritis or a previous injury. Shoulder pain is usually due to the soreness in the shoulder tendon while wrist pain usually comes from cartilage deterioration and carpal tunnel syndrome. Treatments can vary from the type of pain and the severity. There are some treatments that can be applied to wrist and shoulder pain regardless of the type of pain.

A doctor works with a patient who is suffering from shoulder pain (Image: edwardolive/iStock/Getty Images)

Step 1

Take an over-the-counter pain reliever such as Motrin or Advil to relieve immediate pain. Consult your doctor to get stronger pain relievers for intense pain.

Step 2

Rest your shoulder or wrist when you are trying to heal them. You can still move your shoulder or wrist, but refrain from doing any strenuous activity during the healing process.

Step 3

Apply a cold pack to the affected area for 15 minutes. Repeat this cold treatment for a total of three times a day for three days. Cold reduces swelling, inflammation and pain.

Step 4

Apply a hot pack to the affected area once you have completed three days of cold treatments. Keep the heat on the shoulder or wrist for 15 minutes, three times a day for three days.

Step 5

Talk to a physical therapist about a physical therapy exercise routine to help recover your shoulder or wrist. Range of motion exercises will help keep the shoulder or wrist from healing improperly and it can speed up the overall recovery time.

Step 6

Ask your doctor about surgery to heal your wrist or shoulder pain if the pain seems to linger and not fully heal. Surgery can be used to heal broken bones, carpal tunnel syndrome and to repair ruptured tendons or ligaments.

Things You'll Need

  • Pain relievers

  • Ice

  • Cloth


Avoid activities that cause you unnecessary pain during your recovery period.


Consult your doctor for medical advice if your condition seem to worsen over time.

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