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Having Trouble Lifting Your Arm to Brush Your Hair?


Some of the most common ailments related to the shoulder include tight/overworked muscles, tendonitis, impingement and, joint stiffness. All of these can cause pain, weakness, and decrease ability to perform everyday activities.  It can limit our ability to get dressed because it may be difficult to raise your arms in order to pull a shirt over your head and brush your own hair.

Common Causes of Shoulder Injury

  • Traumatic injury/dislocation
  • Poor shoulder mechanics
  • Post Surgery Posture, and muscle use imbalances can contribute to micro trauma and tendinitis, spasm, or the development of trigger points of the shoulder muscles.
  • Arthritis or degeneration of the joints are also causes of gradual onset shoulder pain.
  • Shoulder and upper extremity pain can also be referred or radiating from the neck. There are many different parts that have to be able to work appropriately together for optimal, pain-free shoulder function.

Shoulder pain can present itself in many different ways. You may first notice pain and/or tightness when moving your arm in certain directions. Then, it may progress to where you start to lose range of motion. Range of motion loss is often first seen when trying to tuck in a shirt, fastening a bra or reaching into a cabinet. Sometimes, shoulder pain can manifest itself further down the arm as well. The most common perpetrators of the shoulder pain are impingement of the rotator cuff muscles and biceps tendons. They hurt when you lift your arm above shoulder height. This can become a vicious cycle because repetitive motion can cause pain, which stops you from lifting your arm above your head, which then leads to further loss of mobility, which then leads to further pain and restriction from your ability to drive and prepare meals.

The shoulder has multiple moving joints and it has even more muscles in order to help control the various movements that need to occur at each joint.  Some of the muscles that attach to your shoulder blade and collar bone also attach to your neck, mid-back, chest, and ribs. So due to their interconnectedness and close proximity it is not uncommon for neck or upper back and shoulder issues to sometimes be related or for one to follow the other.

Don’t wait to let the pain progress and affect your daily activities or work. Seek help as soon as the problem starts. Physical therapy is an effective, conservative way to relieve your shoulder pain and help you return to the activities you enjoy doing pain free.  That could be anything from sleeping through the entire night without any pain to returning to baseball or gardening. Physical Therapy can get you out of the vicious cycle of pain.

If you or someone you know is experiencing any of these issues give Loudoun Sports Therapy Center a CALL TODAY at 703-450-4300.

CLICK HERE for more on how physical therapy can help you.


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