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Home > Health Hub > Article > Simple Remedies for Twitching Shoulder Blade

Simple Remedies for Twitching Shoulder Blade

Portea Homecare

Portea Homecare

  Domlur, Bengaluru     Jan 9, 2017

   5 min     


When muscles contract, or tighten up, involuntarily, it is known as a muscle twitch or spasm. In other words, you are not the one controlling the movement in your muscles. Muscle twitches can occur for a variety of reasons, such as stress, consuming too much caffeine, poor diet, the wrong type of exercise, or as a negative effect of medication. Muscle twitching is also called muscle fasciculation.

Muscles in the shoulder, calf muscle, eyelid or thumb commonly contract without your volition. This kind of muscle twitches usually recede on their own and are often related to anxiety or stress. However, if the twitching persists, you should definitely go to a doctor as it could be a sign of some other underlying nerve problem.

A muscle twitch meaning an involuntary contraction of the fibers that make up a muscle. Nerves control muscle fibers. When something stimulates or damages a nerve, it causes the muscle fibers to contract, resulting in a twitch. A person can often see or feel these twitches below the skin.

Common causes of muscle twitching include the following:

  • Consuming too much caffeine and other stimulants can cause muscles in any part of the body to twitch.

  • Twitching can occur after physical activity because lactic acid accumulates in the muscles used during exercise. It most often affects the arms, legs, and back.

  • Deficiencies of certain nutrients can cause muscle spasms, particularly in the eyelids, calves, and hands. Common types of nutritional deficiencies include vitamin D, vitamin B, and calcium deficiencies.

  • The nicotine found in cigarettes and other tobacco products can cause muscle twitching, especially in the legs.

  • Adverse reactions to certain drugs, including corticosteroids and estrogen pills, can trigger muscle spasms. The twitching may affect the hands, arms, or legs. 

  • Muscle spasms can occur in the eyelid or the area around the eye when the eyelid or the surface of the eye is irritated.

Fortunately, shoulder blade spasms can be easily treated. Here are some simple remedies anyone can follow:

1. Stop doing what’s hurting you

If you are doing any sort of physical activity when your spasms start, stop whatever it is that you are doing. Spasms can happen anytime, during exercise or even when you are going about your daily chores. So, if spasms happen, stop your activity and try to rest. Although spasms are painful, there are usually no continuing concerns. Try rubbing or massaging your shoulder blade muscles. This will relax your muscles and increase blood circulation.

2. Rest your affected muscles

After a spasm occurs, rest for a few days is advisable since soreness is typical after it. Your muscles are usually strained, so use this time to recover from extra stress. Move your muscles gently during this time to avoid stiffness. You can move during this period of rest, but stop if you feel pain or a cramp coming on. You can try gentle stretches or walk, just don’t bend or twist the torso.

3. Stretch 

Stretching can help if you experience a spasm. When stretching, you are pulling your muscles in the opposite direction, which elongates and pulls the muscles, thus reducing pain. However, never overstretch the muscle. If you begin to feel pain, stop immediately. Pull the shoulders back, as if you are attempting to touch the shoulder blades close. Hold the position for 5 seconds, then gently release the muscles. Rotating your shoulders counter-clockwise and clockwise for 10 times can also help.

4. Use cold press or heating pads

To relax the muscles and stop the spasms, heat is beneficial while cold will reduce the pain and swelling. When the spasm occurs for the first time, use a cold press. If the spasm occurs again, use heat.

5. Drink electrolytes and fluids

Spasms can occur if you are dehydrated. Thus, it is important to get plenty of hydration. Electrolytes and water can replenish your reduced supply. If you know you are going to exercise or going to vigorously use your muscles, make sure to substitute the nutrients you lose with electrolytes or water.

6. Over-the-counter medications

Sometimes spasms in the shoulder blade muscles can cause pain. You can consult with your doctor and get him/her to prescribe you some over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications such as naproxen sodium or ibuprofen. These will reduce any excessive inflammation, or swelling and increase blood flow to the affected area.

7. Muscle relaxers

Muscle injury-induced spasms or continuous spasms can be best treated with muscle relaxers. Your doctor can prescribe certain medications to ease your muscles and promote blood circulation.

8. Eat the right nutrients

Besides consuming water, make sure to eat enough of the following nutrients if you wish to prevent spasms.

  • Sodium: This mineral balances fluid in your body, thus it is not uncommon if you crave salt after a vigorous work-out. Eating foods that contain sodium, such as celery, can help.

  • Calcium: Muscle contractions are controlled by calcium. So if you are running low on calcium, spasms can become a common occurrence. Consume dark leafy vegetables, dairy and fish to prevent spasms.

  • Magnesium: Magnesium is important for your muscles to relax. Eat plenty of spinach, nuts, lentils, whole grains, bananas and yogurt to keep your muscles relaxed.

  • Potassium: Muscle formation is boosted with potassium. Beans, leafy vegetables, bananas, salmon and mushrooms are good for your muscles.

Muscle twitching has many everyday causes that are not serious. People can easily treat these causes at home and prevent them through specific lifestyle changes. Some causes of muscle twitching are more serious, but these conditions are mostly rare.

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Tags:  Twitching Shoulder, frozen shoulder, fibromyalgia, Exercise, stretches,twitching shoulder, frozen shoulder, exercise, stretches

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