What Is Shoulder Impingement And Could You Have It?
Do you have pain when you reach overhead or out to the side? If so, you might have something called shoulder impingement. This occurs when the rotator cuff tendon (supraspinatus tendon), the bicep tendon, or the subacromial bursa in the shoulder gets pinched between the arm bone (humerus) and the bone at the tip of the shoulder called the acromion. When this happens, the tendon or bursa becomes inflamed and is painful when you reach overhead and out to the side.
Self -management strategies that you can do to manage this condition:
- Avoid the pain. If you do an activity that hurts, try to avoid it. Keep moving your arm but in a painfree manner.
- Ice to decrease the inflammation for 10-15 minutes, twice per day.
- Posture – sitting up tall allows your shoulders to be positioned to create space in the shoulder joint and takes pressure off the inflamed structure.
If these strategies don’t calm down your pain, physical therapy is very effective in decreasing your shoulder pain. In physical therapy, the strength, range of motion, and mechanics of your shoulder will be thoroughly evaluated and you will be given specific exercises to do to correct the problems found. These exercises typically consist of rotator cuff and scapular (shoulder blade) muscle strengthening exercises and flexibility exercises. There are also manual therapy techniques that are utilized to help the inflammation subside and these include transverse friction massage or tool assisted soft tissue mobilization techniques.
Physical therapy is a great choice for treatment of your shoulder pain and can often times eliminate the need for an injection or surgery. Contact us to make an appointment Intake@osipt.com.