6 Most Common Shoulder Injuries and Symptoms


We depend on our shoulders for most of the tasks we do. Among all the joints in the body, the shoulder has the largest range of motion. This flexibility makes it vulnerable to many types of injuries. Below are six common shoulder injuries you need to know about.

1. Shoulder Instability

These common shoulder injuries affect people who engage in vigorous exercises. The injury is caused by stretching muscles and shoulder ligaments beyond their normal limits. As a result, your shoulder becomes painful and unstable. Shoulder instability may be a normal part of growth for younger people, and easy to manage, but becomes a serious case for older people.

Shoulder instability in athletes occurs as a result of tackling or pitching. These motions exert a lot of force on the shoulder, stretching its ligaments over time. The effects may be noticed immediately or gradually. Shoulder instability is treated through physical therapy, rest or surgery. If it is a dislocation, ease the pain by applying ice immediately after the injury.

2. Rotator Cuff Tear Injury

Rotator cuff are upper arm muscles, which make it possible for you to rotate and raise the arm. They feature tendons that attach the muscles to the bones, allowing the rotator cuff to move the arm. The tendons are prone to tearing, hence hindering natural movement of the humerus within the socket. As a result, it gets very difficult to move the arm up or sideways.

Older people are more likely to suffer from rotator cuff tear injury because their tendons are weak. Due to the inadequate supply of blood to the shoulder, it is hard for tendons to fix and repair themselves. You are likely to injure the rotator cuff tendons by lifting heavy objects with an extended arm, falling or catching a falling object.

The symptoms of a torn rotator cuff are soreness or tenderness, especially when using your shoulder. Pain can also be so excruciating that it becomes impossible to raise the arm. The severity of the injury is what determines the kind of treatment to go for. If you suspect you have the rotator cuff tear injury, visit your health provider for professional physiotherapy counsel.

3. Frozen Shoulder

These common shoulder injuries are indicated by extreme stiffness on the shoulder. It is not age restrictive since it affects all age groups. People with other conditions such as heart disease, thyroid disease, Parkinson disease or diabetes, tend to be susceptible to frozen shoulder.

It happens if your shoulder is immobile for long periods, or when an injury has healed but has left a scar tissue that affects the movement of joints. The scar tissue may negatively affect shoulder flexibility and expose it to harm. A frozen shoulder makes any shoulder movement extremely painful. To prevent and manage mild cases, do some stretch exercises before carrying out any activity. For treatment, visit your health provider. He or she will most likely prescribe cortisone shots, NSAIDs, or physical therapy.

4. Overuse/Strains

Shoulders strains are caused by a sudden increase in activity. The stress associated with this injury may lead to loss of flexibility. This condition is common among middle-aged people who irregularly do physical exercises. Strains are painful and inconvenient. Your health provider may recommend NSAIDs or stretching exercises.

5. Shoulder Impingement/Rotator Cuff Tendinitis

These common shoulder injuries affect both young and middle-aged athletes. The most vulnerable ones are those who play baseball, tennis, and engage in swimming and tennis. Painters, paperhangers, and construction workers are also susceptible to this shoulder injury. You are most likely going to be in some form of pain if you have a shoulder injury or a strained muscle. Rotator cuff pain’s symptom is usually tenderness in the shoulder or the arm’s midpoint.

You may also experience pain on the shoulders while lifting your arms. Always seek treatment at the onset of the early signs of rotator cuff tendinitis before it becomes severe. The physician will, among other things, suggest an appropriate therapy depending on your age, general health, among other things. The treatment is aimed at decreasing pain to return you to a regular schedule. Depending on the severity of the injury, medical intervention may be nonsurgical or surgical.

6. SLAP Tear

SLAP stands for Superior Labrum Anterior and Posterior. The SLAP injury affects the top part of the labrum. This is the area where your biceps are attached to the labrum. The SLAP tear occurs at the front and back and is common among baseball and tennis players. Symptoms of a SLAP tear include pain whenever you move the shoulder, a popping or locking sound and decreased range of motion.

The shoulder is one part of your body you need to take good care of. This is because of the vital role it plays in your day-to-day activities. It is important to know what type of injury you could be suffering from and the available medical interventions. Emphasis is on the need to consult a professional health provider for treatment.

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6 Most Common Shoulder Injuries and Symptoms

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