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Avoid Rotator Cuff Injuries: Treat Your Shoulders Correctly And Understand Their Mechanics

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Many types of injuries you can get can be prevented by following good body mechanics and by understanding your body's weaknesses. One common injury people get in their shoulder is a rotator cuff injury. There are some reasons why this is a common injury and you can learn about them, as well as other tips for reducing your risks of rotator cuff damages by reading here.

Your rotator cuff is a complex part of your body

The rotator cuff is made up of four different muscles and their tendons. This fact alone means if you even slightly injure one part of that grouping, it can have a downward spiral effect that can lead to a worsening of the injury. Furthermore, these muscles come together to surround the joint to form the cuff that gives the rotator cuff its name. It has a lot of functions, some of which include: 

  • Lifting the arm to its proper position
  • Allowing that part of the arm to rotate as it does
  • Holding the ball into the socket

Your rotator cuff is susceptible to certain types of injury, simply due to its design

This part of your arm takes on a lot of use just by doing everyday activities, such as brushing/washing your hair, doing dishes, dusting, carrying items, changing light bulbs, and basically anything else that causes you to move your arms, especially moving them in an upward position. Carrying heavy items causes a pulling on the cuff, which is more stress. Something as simple and basic as sleeping with your arm positioned upward with your hand under your head will stretch the muscle grouping in a way that can have negative effects over time.

On top of the things you do every day, there are other things you may do that puts a significant amount of stress on this muscle and tendon grouping, weakening that area and increasing your chances of developing degenerative issues or causing an injury to the area. A few examples of these things include:

  • Playing most sports or participating in other physical activities, such as tennis, golf, baseball, frisbee, swimming, football, etc.
  • Climbing a ladder
  • Doing certain exercises, such as pull-ups or lifting dumbbells
  • Lifting items over your head
  • Painting ceilings

There are some telltale signs of an injury

An injury to this part of your arm can often be obvious, due to the pain and location of that pain. An injury to the rotator cuff generally causes a tremendous amount of pain when you try to lift your arm. The pain usually feels as if it is coming from the center of your shoulder. This injury will more than likely also cause a high degree of pain when you do daily activities as simple as opening a jar, brushing your teeth, grabbing something out of a cupboard, etc.

There are treatments and options available

Since injuries come in all different types, such as tears, strains, and more, the treatments vary from person to person. However, they can include everything from stabilizing the shoulder to injections, or even surgery. If you feel you may have injured yourself, the best thing you can do is be proactive about seeking medical treatment as soon as you can, so you don't make things worse.

If you would like to learn more, contact a company like Omaha Orthopedic Clinic & Sports Medicine PC.