Natural remedies for frozen shoulder and tennis elbow

Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a condition characterized by stiffness and pain in your shoulder joint. Frozen shoulder and tennis elbow are sometimes caused by bursitis, a painful inflammation of a bursae sac found in joints and other areas where friction occurs. Pain, restricted movement, and calcium deposits in the joint can accompany bursitis. Other common forms of bursitis,  include housemaid’s knee, and bunion. You can try these natural remedies for frozen shoulder and tennis elbow if you are suffering from bursitis.

Common causes

Your risk of developing frozen shoulder increases if you’re recovering from a medical condition or procedure that affects the mobility of your arm — such as a stroke or a mastectomy. Frozen shoulder and tennis elbow are sometimes caused by a muscle strain or injury as well.

Natural remedies for frozen shoulder and tennis elbowlavender oil for muscle strains and sprains

Treatment for frozen shoulder involves stretching exercises, essential oil massages, and herbal and nutritional supplements

Massage with lavender essential oil

Daily baths and/or massage of the sore area with lavender oil can case the pain and inflammation or bursitis. Use as needed.

Herbal medicine

For bursitis, use the following combination of oral treatments to reduce inflammation and relieve pain:

Combine the herbs below in the proportions noted and take 5 ml (roughly 1 teaspoon) of the blend 3 times daily for 2 months.

  • 2 parts sarsaparilla tincture, has anti-inflammatory properties.
  • 2 parts meadow-sweet tincture; a strong anti-inflammatory tincture.
  • 2 parts turmeric tincture, turmeric is an Indian spice that has strong anti-inflammatory properties.
  • 1 part ginger root tincture, another famous anti-inflammatory herb.
  • 1-2 parts black cohosh tincture, this is a pain relieving herb.

Boost your immunity

Take a strong antioxidant such as grape seed extract to boost immunity; use according to the manufacturer’s directions.

Arnica oil topical treatmentArnica flower

Combine equal parts of  infused oils of arnica, St. John’s wort, and lobelia seed, with a few drops of essential oil of Sweet Birch. (Note that an infused oil is distinct from an essential oil or herbal tincture. It is the herb in a carrier oil such as olive oil, rather than an extract or an essential oil preserved in alcohol or glycerin). Lightly massage the blend into the affected joint twice daily, for as long as needed.

Mustard oil and garlic

Heat 2 tbsp of mustard oil in a pan and add three to four cloves of crushed garlic and heat till they turn dark brown. Allow this mixture to cool down a bit. Massage your shoulder with this warm oil. It will reduce the pain.

Black sesame seeds

Black sesame seeds are very effective in giving relief from the pain. All you need to do is take a spoonful of black sesame seeds and soak them in water. Allow it to steep overnight and the next morning you can consume these seeds along with the water.

Nutritional Supplements

This program of supplements and herbs needs to be followed for two to four weeks to cure frozen shoulder or tennis elbow:

  • Bromelain: Take 400 mg three times daily on an empty stomach, its an anti-inflammatory compound found in pineapple.
  • Curcumin: 400 mg three times a day. its an active anti-inflammatory component of turmeric
  • Jamaican dogwood: 200 mg 3 times daily, it is anti-inflammatory
  • Vitamin B6: 100 mg daily; support nerve functions.


Try following homeopathic remedies:

  • Bryonia: If your bursitis is characterized by aversion to motion, the desire to hold the sore arm, and improvement with warmth
  • Rhus tox: If the bursitis feels better when you persist in moving the joint through the initial pain and stiffness, is aggravated by wet weather, and is sensitive to cold.
  • Ruta: If bursitis is similar to that described for Rhus tox, but there is less improvement with motion.

Take the appropriate remedy at a 12 c or 30 c Potency, 2—3 times daily. If the bursitis is acute  in onset, rather than coming on gradually, take the remedy 4 times per day. This is true of the bursitis for which Bryonia is the remedy. Reduce the frequency gradually as there is improvement. Stop taking the remedy when the condition has improved.

Food recommendations

Eat small meals containing lean protein, steamed green vegetables, pineapple and other alkalinizing foods. Also eat foods high in vitamin B12 and fiber. Avoid greasy or fried foods, food allergens, nightshade vegetables, and acid forming foods.