Shoulder Pain Prevention & Treatment

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Shoulder pain affects everyone in their lifetime. Learn about types, common causes, prevention, and treatment of shoulder pain.
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"Shoulder pain treatment options vary widely and can be confusing without a medical degree to help interpret your options. Shoulder pain affects most everyone in their lifetime and can range from minor soreness to debilitating pain. While extremely common, shoulder pain can be easily prevented with lifestyle modification as well as successfully treated with the proper rehabilitation. In the segment below, we"ll discuss shoulder anatomy and the most common causes, types, and treatments for shoulder pain.

Shoulder Anatomy
The shoulder is a complex structure made up of bone, cartilage, muscles, tendons, ligaments and bursa. All of these structures serve an important role in allowing your shoulder to be simultaneously very flexible while maintaining stability. Few other joints in the body have such a large range of motion while maintaining the capacity to lift and carry hundreds of pounds at a time.

Shoulder Muscles and Tendons
The shallow bony socket of the shoulder allows for this greater flexibility while the muscles of the rotator cuff provide our much needed stability. The rotator cuff (or often misnomered as the infamous "rotator cup") is a grouping of four muscles that attach to your humerus (arm bone) and hold it in place in the socket of your scapula (shoulder blade). The muscles of the rotator cuff (the supraspinatus, the infraspinatus, the subscapularis, and the teres minor) play a crucial role in allowing you to lift and rotate your arm with good mechanics. The biceps muscle is another important muscle that provides stability and function to the shoulder joint complex. Tendons are simply the attachment points that connect your muscle onto the bone and are often vulnerable to injury.

Shoulder Labrum and Bursa
Anything that moves experiences friction, and the more movement available means the more wear and tear that occurs. Because our shoulders have such a large range of motion and are so frequently used throughout the day, our body has developed two defense mechanisms to protect our muscles and bones from this wear and tear: the labrum and the bursa. The shoulder labrum is a piece of tissue that sits between the arm bone and the socket of the shoulder and both deepens the socket for stability and acts as a cushion between bones. The bursa are fluid filled sacs that act as little pillows between areas that frequently experience friction."

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