Kelley Southard - July 21, 2022

Ouch! Why Does My Shoulder Hurt? 3 Sneaky Reasons

older gentleman wondering why does my shoulder hurt

Why Does My Shoulder Hurt? Let Me Count the Possibilities.

If you’ve ever wondered, “Why does my shoulder hurt,” then you might be interested in some of the causes of shoulder pain. Shoulder pain is a common complaint that almost everyone suffers from at some time in their lives. There are several possible causes for the discomfort you’re going through.

Causes of Shoulder Pain

While the shoulder is a joint with a large range of motion, it is also susceptible to injury, inflammation, and irritated tendons. It can be caused by repetitive use, poor posture, and certain health conditions. In this article, we’ll discuss the causes of shoulder pain.

  • Bursitis
  • Shoulder impingement
  • Rotator cuff injury

Your healthcare provider will discuss your symptoms and perform a physical exam. He or she will evaluate your shoulder’s range of motion and tenderness. If your pain persists, your provider may recommend a diagnostic test. These tests include X-rays and ultrasounds. Your healthcare provider will also ask you to perform various motions to rule out non-shoulder conditions. An EMG (electromyogram) is also used to assess nerve function.

So, why does my shoulder hurt? The cause of shoulder pain varies from person to person. X-rays and MRIs are helpful to rule out other conditions. Depending on the underlying cause, a treatment plan may include rest, cold packs, physical therapy, or steroid injections. If you have pain that doesn’t resolve in a day or two, you should seek medical attention. Your healthcare provider will likely recommend a treatment plan based on your symptoms and the results of your medical exam.

Shoulder pain can cause disturbed sleep as the bursa sac in the shoulder has time to reabsorb fluid and swell while you rest at night. This swelling can be painful when lying onto that shoulder. If you want to know how to relieve shoulder pain at night, follow our treatments for shoulder pain.

Physical Therapist can answer why does my shoulder hurt

Treatments for Shoulder Pain

Shoulder pain can be caused by a number of different conditions. The most common of these is impingement syndrome, which causes inflammation and pain in the rotator cuff tendons. Often times, nonsurgical treatments, such as physical therapy, can be very successful. The goal of physical therapy is to strengthen the muscles that surround the shoulder joint and improve its mobility and function. A physical therapist will carefully examine the condition of the shoulder joint to determine the proper course of treatment.

Nonsurgical treatments for shoulder pain typically start with a period of rest and ice. Ice reduces pain and inflammation while decreasing lymph fluid flow. Applying ice to the area at least 20 minutes a day is most effective for the first 48 hours. A physician can prescribe medications if necessary. Some physicians will prescribe a combination of medications and physical therapy to treat shoulder pain.

Physical therapy will first help reduce pain, then restore and protect the motion of your shoulder. Once pain is under control, stabilization and strengthening of the rotator cuff are the focus of therapy.

Preventing Shoulder Injury

Preventing shoulder injury when it hurts begins with recognizing the early warning signs. Pain, soreness, fatigue, and discomfort are your body’s warning signals. If you notice them early, seek medical help. Also, avoid using your shoulder as a lever, as this can lead to more serious problems. Ensure that you use proper posture while lifting objects and squatting when necessary. If you are experiencing persistent pain, see your doctor for a diagnosis.

Symptoms of shoulder pain are primarily caused by repetitive overhead movements or exercises, such as shoulder bursitis that can come from participating in sports. While resting is important for recovery, you should avoid performing activities that may aggravate the injury. In order to reduce the risk of shoulder pain, do alternate exercises. A gentle stretching routine will relieve some of the stress on the shoulder while it recovers. This will allow the joint to regain range of motion and strength. For those who are unable to take up weight-bearing activities for a few weeks, try mild stretches to keep the shoulder moving.

To prevent shoulder pain and injuries, proper posture is key. While lifting heavy objects, use your legs to lift them and avoid stretching your shoulder muscles upwards to the ears. Also, make sure your computer desk is the proper height and distance away from your body. If you must sit for long periods of time, consider buying a standing desk to maintain proper posture and avoid back and neck pain. It also helps keep your shoulder pain under control. No one wants you asking, “Why does my shoulder hurt?”

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