A rotator cuff is a group of muscles, and the tissues that connect the muscles called tendons. These muscles keep the head of the humerus bone inside the shoulder joint and prevent it from dislocation. Rotator cuff injury is a common type of sports injuries that can give you chronic pain if you do not seek treatment early enough.
Rotator cuff injuries also affect people who do overhead motions like when a painter is painting a ceiling or high wall. Your likelihood of getting these injuries increases as you advance in age. The severity of the symptoms varies in different people, and Garen Gajian MD offers personalized treatment based on your presentation. Some people only get mild symptoms that resolve on their own while others require surgery.
How Does A Rotator Cuff Injury Present?
Rotator cuff injury presents with a dull pain on the shoulder. The shoulder pain runs deep in the shoulder. Severe pain disrupts your sleep and limits you from carrying out daily activities. If the injury has affected the nerves in the joint, you may develop numbness in your arm.
The rotator cuff muscles facilitate the movement of your upper limbs. When these muscles get an injury, you are unable to reach your back, lift your arms, or sleep on the injured arm. You should consult a doctor if you have severe pain in your shoulder joint and if your shoulder joint is swollen.
Complications of this type of injury include chronic pain and losing the function of the shoulder permanently. Some people also get permanent weakness of the shoulder joint, and this can affect your productivity at work.
A frozen joint is a problem which happens when you do not use the joint for a long time. A frozen shoulder occurs because the connective tissues in the joint become hard, reducing performance. If you get an injury on your shoulder, you should go for a checkup to rule out a rotator cuff injury.
What Exercises Should You Do To Manage The Symptoms Of A Rotator Cuff Injury?
When you get a rotator cuff injury, you should use the “RICE” method to manage your symptoms. This method stands for rest, ice, compression and elevation. Resting your arm helps to reduce further damage to the soft tissues in and around the joint like the nerves.
Applying ice or compresses on the joint reduces the pain while the elevation of the limb reduces any swelling on the joint. When the pain and swelling have reduced, you can do some exercises to reduce the complications of these injuries.
These exercises include the doorway stretch, which involves placing both hands on an open doorway with your hands at the level of the elbow. You should then lean forward while keeping your back straight until you feel a slight stretch on your shoulder.
Another exercise is the reverse fly which you should bend your knees but keep your back straight. With your feet apart you should then extend your arms but don’t do this beyond the height of your shoulders.
Rotator cuff injuries occur during sports, while doing repetitive overhead motions,and in people who are older than 60 years. These injuries cause pain, swelling and weakness of the shoulder and affect a group of muscles called the rotator cuff muscles. To prevent chronic complications of this type of injury, you should consult a doctor when you experience these symptoms.