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what's the best way to recover after a shoulder injury at they gym?

not a major injury, and healing (it's been 5 days), but don't want to re-injure and curious if I can do anything to heal faster

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Shoulders are complicated and there are a ton of ways to injure them. If it was a minor injury, you should be good to return once the pain and swelling go down, but you should also look into adding work to your routine that will strengthen rotational muscles and add mobility to your shoulder so that you do not reinjure it or end up with worse injuries in the long run. Since it was a minor injury, you likely don't need evaluation by a physical therapist, but I highly recommend the work of Eric Cressey and Mike Robertson for overviews on how to build healthier shoulders. Good luck!

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It depends on if it's a muscle tear/strain or if it is tendons or something similar. . . If it is just a muscle strain, you should 1) Drink TONS of water 2) Take two advil as directed on the box (ie: every four hours or something). This will take down any swelling which is what causes a lot of the pain. 3) Use Arnica gel or lotion. It is an all natural remedy and helps immensely with muscle and bruise healing. Rub it on very liberally as often as you feel like it. 4) Stretch very conservatively but often.

Hope that helps!

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Thank you! No idea why your answer was given two thumbs down. :/ I'm thumbs upping...
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The biggest problem with this answer is that is doesn't suggest anything to speed up healing. The other answer on this page seems to have been by an expert.

Advil should be taken 800mG per dose three times daily, never exceeding 3.25 grams / day. This is only for inflamation-type injuries and only for a three week loading period followed by a maintenance of 800mG/day to replace renal excretions. Arnica gel will relieve pain but not help healing whatsoever. Stretching can be VERY DANGEROUS and worsen an injury. Stretching should be performed after the injury heals before exercising again.
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