Did you know that more than 7 million people go to the doctor’s every year for shoulder injuries? Did you know that more than 4 million of those injuries were rotator cuff issues?
Unless you are a healthcare professional, chances are you didn’t know either of the facts above. Of course, just because you didn’t know these statistics doesn’t mean they are not true.
Shoulder injuries are very common in athletes, especially in participants involved in sports that involve excessive and repetitive motion (pitching, tennis, swimming, etc). Of course, athletes are not the only ones at risk for shoulder injuries. Simple tasks like painting or reaching for the top shelf in your closet can result in a shoulder injury.
If you find that your shoulder is stiff and the range of motion is limited, lacks strength or feels as if it could shift out of place, then you probably have a shoulder injury and should see a physical therapist for help.
A licensed physical therapist specializes in diagnosing different shoulder injuries and then treating said injuries. Here are just a few of those injuries:
- Rotator cuff – I mentioned this above. The rotator cuff is made of tendons and muscles that connect the upper bone with the shoulder blade. These injuries present with pain that can make even the most simple of tasks unbearable.
- Shoulder bursitis – This is more commonly known as inflammation, specifically of the bursa (lubricating fluid between a tendon and bone). It is caused by repetitive use and presents with pain, swelling and stiffness.
- Frozen shoulder – I recently wrote on this topic and you can find it here.
- Dislocated shoulder – This is a shoulder injury that is very common in football and hockey and other sports where athletes are colliding at high speeds. It occurs when the bone comes out of the socket.
If you find yourself with any of these shoulder injuries, or others, seek the services of a licensed physical therapist. They will set you up on a rehabilitation program to heal your shoulder as safely and quickly as possible.