Hard to raise your arm above your head? Interestingly, our shoulders are part of an interconnected web of bones, joints, connective tissues, nerves and of course muscles that give the proper support to function normally. The four muscles comprising the rotator cuff are the Supraspinatus mm, Infraspinatus mm., Teres Minor mm., and Subscapularis mm.. It's believed by shoulder experts, that our upper extremity can get into about 1,400 positions within a 3 dimensional space around the shoulder joint. With a healthy shoulder, complex activities like painting, dancing, and throwing a football seem easy. (1)
Rotator Cuff Pain Causes
- Frozen shoulder occurs when the humerus adheres to the shoulder blade with muscle spasm often creating intense pain.
- Subacromial bursitis occurs when the bursa is irritated. This bursa cushions the rotator cuff tendons from an nearby bone called the acromion. (2)
- Rotator cuff tear happen when the tendons tear.
- Direct trauma from a car accident (seat belt or air bag can injure the shoulder0
- Rotator cuff impingement is when the tendons are compressed between two bones, the acromion and the humerus
Rotator Cuff Injury Symptoms
- Neck and Shoulder Pain when turning head
- Pain when side sleeping on affected shoulder
- Restricted shoulder motion like difficulty reaching above head
- Arm and Shoulder Weakness
Shoulder Pain/Rotator Cuff Stretches
1. Neck Stretch – Sit up straight then slowly, gently bring your chin toward your chest until you feel the stretch in the back of your neck. Try leaning your head to the left to stretch your right shoulder or leaning your head to the right to stretch your left shoulder. Hold the stretches up to 20 seconds in each direction, breathing deeply as you concentrate on relaxing. Repeat 1-2 times. The exhale of breathing is where you want to gently press into stretch but always listen to your body. If anything feels tender or painful, stop immediately.
2. Arm Across-Chest Stretch – Hold your right hand out in front of you, keeping it next to your waist. Reach your left hand behind your elbow, pulling your right arm to the left and across your chest. If you feel pain in your shoulder, release or lower your arm until the pain subsides. The goal is to be able to pull your right arm across your chest without feeling any pain. Hold for 10-20 seconds then relax and repeat with your left arm. Repeat 1-2 times. Sometimes using a mirror can be helpful to maintain good form.
Shoulder Pain Relief Treatments
- Gentle treatments of shoulder or rotator cuff injuries or shoulder pain with the AO Treatment plus trigger point massage therapy.
- Medical Massage Therapy is effective for releasing adhesions in the neck and shoulders while promoting healing and relaxation.
- Dr. Eric also provides individualized stretches, self massage and strengthening exercise for continued rehabilitation to provide shoulder pain relief.
For more information, please visit www.praglechiro.com or call 850 508 5951 to reach Pragle Chiropractic And Massage Therapy in Tallahassee, FL