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Shoulder Pain

Shoulder pain often comes on without warning and for no apparent reason.  There are several types of shoulder injuries, getting to the root of what is happening or ruling out damage is important.

The shoulder is the most flexible joint in your body and given the number of everyday activities it’s involved in from brushing your hair, lifting, or carrying items to reaching up into the cupboard—it’s easy to see why shoulder pain is something you’d want to get to the bottom of right away.

The most common shoulder injury is tendinitis.  Limitation in the range of movement often occurs, making it more difficult to perform daily activities or overhead functions.  Your shoulder depends on strong tendons, ligaments, and muscles to keep it stable. 

The shoulder joint is comprised of a group of muscles called the rotator cuff that keeps the upper arm (humerus) within the socket of the shoulder blade (scapula).  When one or more of the tendons becomes inflamed, tendinitis occurs.  Shoulder tendinitis is usually attributed to some repetitive stress on the shoulder tendons seen in golfing, tennis, and overhead activities. 

Sometimes it can be from an obvious injury or fall, in those cases a rotator cuff tear can happen.  Symptoms include pain at rest and aggravated by movement.


In the first 24-48 hours following any mild shoulder injury, symptoms can be treated with ice or cold pack.  After this time frame, heat often relieves the discomfort.  If there is an obvious injury or if the pain is severe, a physical examination is important. 

Some signs that you should be seen by a doctor include:

·      Inability to carry objects or use the arm

·      Shoulder pain that occurs at night or while resting

·      Shoulder pain that persists beyond a few days

·      Difficulty raising the arm overhead

Ideally, I can guide you through correct movement patterns helping you to heal, with consistent treatment here at Forward Health we can focus on your mobility and strengthening the injured areas.  Treatment recommendations will be based on your diagnosis.  

Most cases of shoulder tendinitis get better over time, treatment ensures continued range of motion, and reduces the risk of developing frozen shoulder.  In addition, treatment will strengthen and maintain function in the shoulder muscles and help return patients to their pre-injury level of activity.

Ease Back Into Exercise By:

·      Using less weight (lighten the load)

·      Focus on your form

·      When using dumbbells, keep your thumbs up to keep the shoulder in a neutral position (thumbs down can cause impingement)

·      Avoid dips until you get the go ahead to re-introduce them

·      Avoid compressing the shoulder

Injuries happen know that we can guide you with targeted shoulder strengthening exercises to prevent re-occurance of your injury.  Contact us if you need help with a shoulder issue.