Shoulder Pain in Happy Valley

Statistically 1 out of 3 people will experience shoulder pain that interferes with some aspect of their lives. And of those people, 1 out of 2 will experience shoulder pain up to 3 years later. Shoulder pain is also the second most common reason for an orthopedic visit to your primary care physician. However, don’t be discouraged. You don’t need to settle for living with shoulder pain. Read on to find out how our Doctors of Physical Therapy can help you today!

Prevalent Shoulder Injuries Involve:

  • Rotator Cuff
  • Biceps Tendon
  • Labrum
  • Acromioclavicular Joint
  • Bursa
  • Impingement

Shoulder Structures

Your shoulder is the most mobile complex in your body. It is a collaboration of 3 joints: your glenohumeral joint, scapulothoracic joint, and acromioclavicular joints. Bear in mind however, the mobility of your shoulder is also dependent on distant structures such as your spine. When you raise your arm over your head, your spine is actually rotating during the movement in addition to the other aforementioned joints. Likewise, complex muscle integrations can influence shoulder mobility. For example, your lats can restrict your arm movement over your head but attach in your low back! Needless to say, a thorough physical examination to determine the source of your shoulder pain is essential to resolving the problem.

Physical Therapy for Shoulder Pain

During and after an injury, it is common for tissues to become stiff, rigid, and weak. These impairments can result in altered shoulder mechanics and compensatory patterns that lead to further problems.

Your shoulder is comprised of a ball and socket type joint. The socket is relatively shallow and provides minimal passive stability. This is both good, and bad. It is good in the sense that it allows us a vast amount of mobility and freedom to move our arms, but bad in that it is more susceptible to injury. The majority of stability in your shoulder comes from your rotator cuff musculature. This leads to a dynamic stability and mobility function.

Treatment of Chest Injuries

Strains of the chest wall, or pecs, is more common amongst weightlifters and athletes during sport participation. Usually minor in severity, ongoing strain in the pecs can lead to dysfunctional postures contributing to pain in the back and shoulders.

Through the use of targeted stretching and hands on muscle mobilization, normal motion can be restored in the shoulder. By correcting imbalances between joint mechanics, rehabilitation and enhancement of ability is typical.

Treatment of Rotator Cuff Injuries

Tears and strains of the rotator cuff can happen to anyone. We’ve seen injuries result from: catching a falling object, slipping while holding onto a fixed structure, throwing objects – including during sports, and degenerative injuries related to poor posture and mechanically control of shoulder joint.

To maximize shoulder rehabilitation, specific and progressive loading of the rotator cuff and supporting musculature is critical. Early on, successful management of symptoms and restoration of range of motion are the goals. As soon as tolerable, the rotator cuff and musculature will need to begin loading at an appropriate intensity and dosage. Reintegration into all of your typical activities without symptoms is the target.

Treatment of Clavicle (Collar bone) Fracture

Fractures of the clavicle bones are relatively common due to the size and positioning of the bones. Common mechanisms involve falling or a direct impact during sports or in a vehicle collision. X-ray images are standard and are used to ensure that the bone doesn’t have sharp edges angled toward some vital organs (lungs especially). Once the fracture is fixated surgically or healed with union, physical therapy is strongly encouraged to facilitate a full recovery to your prior level of function.

Progressive safe loading of the tissues in combination with targeted stretching activities should result in full recovery.

If a shoulder injury has been interfering with your life, call us today to get started on a plan of care that works for you. Ascent Physical Therapy is conveniently located off Sunnyside Road in Happy Valley. We also love treating our neighboring communities of Damascus, Gresham, Clackamas, and Sandy at our top rated physical therapy clinic!