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  • Writer's pictureHannah Foster-Middleton

5 Conditions Causing Your Shoulder Pain

Updated: Feb 23

Physiotherapy is a non-invasive, safe, and effective treatment choice intended to improve movement and alleviate pain arising from a wide variety of work and sports injuries, musculoskeletal disorders, age-related conditions, and more. Usually, patients undergo physiotherapy to help relieve symptoms of chronic pain and avoid potential injuries. One of the most common reasons for people to visit a physiotherapy clinic is to identify and treat the cause of their chronic shoulder pain.

Several common causes give rise to chronic pain in the shoulder. However, one thing is certain: coping with shoulder pain will make it difficult to complete everyday tasks if left untreated.

What can physiotherapy do for me?

Seeing a physiotherapist as soon as possible if you have encountered persistent shoulder pain is a good idea. Physiotherapy is a safe and natural recovery choice that will enable patients of all ages to recover from their shoulder injuries effectively.

Your physiotherapist will analyze your condition, find the cause of your pain, and develop a detailed, specialized treatment plan for your individual needs.

To get relief from shoulder pain, there’s no justification for spending loads of money on costly operations or drugs. Physiotherapy could help you get back on the pain-free road.

5 common conditions of shoulder pain

Without giving much thought to how they use their shoulders, most people typically just go about their day. Did you know that to help you complete daily tasks, your shoulders do a good bit of work? There is a good possibility that if you injure or strain your shoulders, you will end up experiencing severe pain.

Five of shoulder pain’s most common causes include:



1. Impingement

Shoulder impingement syndrome occurs as the result of chronic, repeated compression of the rotator cuff tendons. The rotator cuff is the group of muscles that attaches the arm to the shoulder providing range of motion and power. This impingement causes pain and movement problems. An injury to the shoulder also can cause this condition. People who do repeated overhead arm movements are most at risk for developing shoulder impingement. It occurs more often among manual laborers and athletes (such as weightlifters, volleyball players, or baseball pitchers). Poor posture also can contribute to its development. If left untreated, a shoulder impingement can lead to more serious conditions, such as a rotator cuff tear. Physiotherapy will decrease pain and improve shoulder motion and strength

2. Frozen Shoulder

A frozen shoulder occurs when the connective tissue enclosing the joint becomes thickened and tight. Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a condition characterized by stiffness and pain in your shoulder joint. The resulting disability can be serious and the condition tends to get worse over time if left untreated It affects mainly people ages 40 – 60 and women more than men.

There are 3 stages of a frozen shoulder:

·         Freezing, or painful stage: Pain increases gradually, making shoulder motion harder and harder. Pain tends to be worse at night. ...

·         Frozen: Pain does not worsen, and it may decrease at this stage. The shoulder remains stiff. ...

·         Thawing: Movement gets easier and may eventually return to normal.

The true cause of a frozen shoulder is unknown but an inflammatory process is involved. Sometimes freezing occurs because the shoulder has been immobilized for a long time by injury, surgery, or illness. Fortunately, the shoulder can usually be “unfrozen” with physiotherapy but a full recovery takes time and a lot of help.

3. Bursitis

The shoulder is made up of a very complex network of moving parts. This makes it a pretty complicated joint! One of the main components that make up the shoulder is called the “bursa.”

Bursae are small fluid-filled sacs that reduce friction between the moving parts in your shoulder joint. Bursitis of the shoulder occurs when there is swelling and redness between the top of the arm bone and the tip of the shoulder due to a lack of sufficient space.


4. Tendinitis

Tendinitis is a very common condition that often sends people straight to a physiotherapist for pain relief. It causes inflammation and usually affects people who take part in many physical activities or work at a job that requires them to use lots of repetitive motions every day.

For example, if you are an athlete who plays tennis, or a professional painter, you could be at high risk for developing tendinitis in your shoulder. This is because you make the same repetitive motions every day to play your sport or do your job.

5. Tendon Tears

The natural aging process, overuse, and random injuries can often cause split or torn tendons. Regardless of whether a patient has experienced a partial or full tendon tear, the pain can be searing.

More than 90% of tendon injuries are long-term in nature, and 33-90% of these chronic rupture symptoms go away without surgery. In contrast, acute rupture, as occurs with trauma, may or may not be repaired surgically depending on the severity of the tear and the resulting disability.

So don’t wait or suffer in silence. The sooner you receive treatment the better your outcome will be.

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