Shoulder pain is an extremely common complaint and there are a variety of causes.
Shoulder rehabilitation exercises are essential following shoulder injury.
Causes of Shoulder Pain
The most common causes of pain are related to inflammation of the joint.
This inflammation usually occurs after an injury to the joint, and it can often go undetected by the patient.
In addition to inflammation, other causes of shoulder pain include a separation of the joint or a tear of the ligaments attaching bone to bone or the tendons which attach muscle to bone.
Shoulder Pain Treatment
Within the first 48 hours, treatment primarily aims to reduce the friction and inflammation by resting the joint.
This can be accomplished with the use of a sling, or support, to immobilize the arm and reduce movement in the joint.
After the acute inflammation has settled down, the rehabilitation concentrates on mobility exercises and strength exercises.
The flexibility of the shoulder joint leads to a more rapid and complete recovery.
The best mobility and flexibility exercise of the shoulder is called the Pendulum, and it involves letting your arm hang down in front of you by being bent forwards, and then letting the arm swing in small circles.
The arm swings gentle clockwise, and then anti-clockwise for around one minute, five times per day.
After exercise, it is important to ice and then rest the joint. Anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen also decrease pain and increase healing of the joint.
It could become necessary for a steroid to be injected into the joint to reduce inflammation and pain so that rehabilitation exercises are possible but these measures should be weighed up with the advice from a specialist.
Shoulder strengthening exercises
As flexibility and range of motion increases, strengthening exercises can be added to the regime. Light weights of two to five pounds can be held during the full range of motion exercises.
It is important to gradually increase the weights and to do the exercises a minimum of three times per week, although a series of five times per week is preferable.
Not only do these exercises need to be repeated until the shoulder joint has begun to heal but these exercises should be continued after healing is complete.
Shoulder rehabilitation exercises keep the shoulder muscles strong, as well as prevent a repeat of the injury.