Costochondritis is a painful condition and comes with many side effects. It occurs when the cartilage in your rib cage gets severely inflamed. The inflammation appears on the rib cage but can go up to the costosternal joint, also known as the breast stone. Chest pain is one of the main symptoms that you may experience due to this condition. However, the intensity of chest pain may vary from person to person.
If you’re suffering from mild chest pain, you can try out different treatments such as stretches. To have a better insight on Costochondritis and how to relieve the pain with the help of stretches, you must continue reading further below.
The Causes behind Costochondritis
There are many reasons behind Costochondritis. Most of these are related to your early health issues that may trigger this inflammation. One of the main causes of this condition is physical strain after lifting heavy weights or taking part in strenuous exercise. These exercises can sometimes put a lot of strain on your upper body muscles, resulting in this condition. Another reason could be due to an accident, especially a bad car crash or fall. These accidents usually cause trauma to the chest resulting in conditions such as Costochondritis. Other causes are arthritis, costosternal joint region tumor, or viruses such as syphilis and tuberculosis.
Types of Stretches to Relieve Pain from Costochondritis
After much research, experts have suggested that one of the ways to relieve pain from Costochondritis is stretching. A study conducted in 2009 proves that patients diagnosed with Costochondritis experienced less pain after performing a few stretches. Stretching usually helps relieve the tension around the swollen areas or areas that cause a lot of pain. Have you noticed that you tend to feel fresher after exercising? Hence, your muscles start to cool down after stretching and help simmer down different bodily pain.
Mentioned below are a few stretches you must try out if you want instant pain relief. But before trying out these stretches, make sure you consult your physical therapist or doctor as you don’t want these exercises to make your symptoms worse.
1. Scapular Squeezes
Scapular squeezes are one of the best and easiest stretches you can carry out for instant relief from Costochondritis pain. For this stretch, you will need a resistance band; however, you can do it without one as well. All you have to do is sit on your yoga mat and wear the resistance band around your feet. Next, hold the band facing upwards with your thumbs, keeping your arms on your sides. Make sure that your shoulders are well-aligned and relaxed. Squeeze your shoulder blades together behind for your elbows to pull back. You must complete 10 reps of this stretch per day and gradually increase them from 10 to 20.
2. Doorway Pectoral Stretch
This next one is another easy exercise that almost everyone can do. For this stretch, you have to stand in front of an open doorway in your house. Raise your arm with the help of your elbow at a 90 degrees angle. While doing this, rest your forearm on the wall with the support of your elbows. Slowly stretch your chest muscles by pushing forward for 30 seconds. You can do this stretch 20 times a day. According to a study, patients suffering from Costochondritis reported a reduction in pain after performing 20 doorway pectoral stretches per day.
3. Arm Back Stretch
The arm back stretch involves keeping your elbows to your side and expanding your chest as much as you can. Next, you have to row your arm backward at the same time, keeping them against the side. Doing this, you will feel slight chest pain relief. You can do this as many times as you can. By regularly practicing this stretch, you will see better results and get rid of the pain caused by Costochondritis.
4. Stretches Using Foam Rollers
You will need foam rollers that are easily available in gym stores. For this stretch, you have to lie down flat on a foam roller, extending your arms to the side with your elbows and keep your knees bent. Stay in this potion for about 20 seconds, and then gradually move your arm in a snow angel position. Stretches with foam rollers are quite intense, so only do it once your doctor approves them for you. Immediately leave it if it’s causing you any discomfort.
Follow these stretches for instant pain relief from Costochondritis, and make sure that you visit a doctor if you experience the symptoms. These stretches are good for instant relief; however, they are not always the best treatment. Hence, you must consult your doctor regarding your condition.