Try these steps to help ease discomfort and encourage healing after being treated for a dislocation injury:
Jan. 25, 2014
- Rest your dislocated joint. Don't repeat the specific action that caused your injury, and try to avoid painful movements.
- Apply ice and heat. Putting ice on your injured joint helps reduce inflammation and pain. Use a cold pack for 15 to 20 minutes at a time. For the first day or two, try to do this every couple of hours during the day. After about two or three days, when the pain and inflammation have improved, hot packs or a heating pad may help relax tightened and sore muscles. Limit heat applications to 20 minutes at a time.
- Take a pain reliever. Over-the-counter medications, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others), naproxen (Aleve) or acetaminophen (Tylenol, others), may help relieve pain.
- Maintain the range of motion in your joint. After one or two days, do some gentle exercises as directed by your doctor or physical therapist to help maintain range of motion in your injured joint. Total inactivity can cause stiff joints.
- Marx JA, et al. Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 8th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2014. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed July 31, 2013.
- Sherman SC. Shoulder dislocation and reduction. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed July 31, 2013.
- Joshi SV. Digit dislocation reduction. http://www.update.com/home. Accessed July 31, 2013.
- Elbow dislocation. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00029. Accessed Aug. 1, 2013.
- Laskowski ER (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Aug. 6, 2013.
- Moore BR, et al. Recognition and initial management of lateral patellar dislocation. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Aug. 1, 2013.
- Canale ST, et al. Campbell's Operative Orthopaedics. 12th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2013. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Aug. 1, 2013.