HOW TO RECOVER QUICKLY FROM A ROTATOR CUFF INJURY
Your rotator cuff is comprised of the muscles and tendons surrounding your shoulder joint. Sometimes, the rotator cuff can become torn or injured, due to repetitive overhead motions performed in sports (such as tennis) or jobs (such as carpentry.) Athletes are also at risk of developing a rotator cuff injury if they participate in rigorous activities, such as weightlifting, swimming, or tennis. The active movements associated with sports and laborious work are undoubtedly important factors to keep in mind; however, passive movements can also be contributing factors to an injury. Continuous poor posture and improper positioning of the shoulders can make your scapula, or shoulder blade, much more vulnerable to pain and rotator cuff injuries. Those who experience rotator cuff injuries or “torn shoulders” generally report a dull ache deep in their shoulder, arm weakness, difficulty reaching behind their back, and disturbed sleep due to pain. At SOS Physiotherapy, our natural and non-invasive methods can help relieve your shoulder pain and heal your rotator cuff injury. How can physiotherapy help a rotator cuff injury? While rotator cuff injuries sometimes require surgery if they are severe enough, there are several cases where physiotherapy treatments can work just as well (if not better) than surgery.
According to the American Physiotherapy Association, “A recent study from Finland asserts that when it comes to treatment of nontraumatic rotator cuff tears, physiotherapy alone produces results equal to those produced by arthroscopic surgery and open surgical repair.” In this same study, a follow-up on 167 patients receiving physiotherapy alone for their rotator cuff injuries, demonstrated that conservative treatment, such as physiotherapy, should be considered as the primary treatment for this condition.
HOW DO I KNOW IF PHYSIOTHERAPY IS NEEDED?
It is natural to experience an occasional ache or pain from overexertion. However, it is when the pain becomes chronic or unbearable that the condition becomes serious. Chronic pain, or pain persisting for three months or longer, is an indication that PT intervention is needed. There are some additional symptoms to consider that may also be telling signs that treatment is needed, such as:
If you notice any of these symptoms, it is important to contact a physiotherapist for treatment.
How can I begin treatments? At SOS Physiotherapy, we will conduct a physical evaluation and diagnostic tests to determine if you do indeed have a rotator cuff tear, and we will design a personalized treatment plan based on the needs of your diagnosis. Specialized manual therapy techniques, ultrasound, and/or laser may be used to relieve pain, reduce swelling, and enhance function. Gentle stretches and exercises will also be prescribed to improve your posture, strength, and range of motion of your shoulder. If you are suffering from a rotator cuff injury, contact us today. Our dedicated physiotherapists will provide you with some much-needed relief and get you started on your path toward recovery!
• Sharp or stinging pains.
• Uncomfortable “clicking” sounds with movement.
• Dull pain that runs alongside your arm.
• Sudden arm weakness.
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