Are You Experiencing One of These 5 Common Shoulder Injuries? Find Relief With PT

Physical therapy is used to treat any sports injury, workplace injury, or musculoskeletal condition you may be experiencing. It is a natural, safe, and effective way to treat both acute and chronic pain.

One of the most common reasons people seek the help of a physical therapist is to manage chronic shoulder pain. There are a number of different reasons why shoulder pain may occur, and it can greatly limit your everyday life. If you have been experiencing shoulder pain, or decreased function within your shoulder, don’t hesitate to contact our office today.

5 of the most common shoulder injuries:

The average person probably doesn’t give much thought to their shoulders as they go about their day. However, your shoulders actually do quite a lot of work to help you complete everyday tasks, and if they become strained or injured, you could be left experience severe shoulder pain. Some of the most common causes of shoulder pain include:

1. Tendon tears

The tendons in your shoulder can tear as the result of an acute injury or certain degenerative conditions. The natural aging process, sudden injuries, and overuse often cause the tendons to split or tear. Whether a patient is experiencing a partial or a full tendon tear, the pain can be extremely intense and it may require regular appointments with a skilled physical therapist.

2. Bursitis

The shoulder is a complicated joint that is made up of an intricate network of moving parts. One of the key components that make up the shoulder is called bursa. The bursa contains tiny sacs of fluid that work to keep the shoulder joint lubricated. If the bursa becomes irritated or inflamed, you can develop bursitis, and you will need to schedule a physical therapy appointment as soon as possible.

3. Tendinitis

Tendinitis is a common condition that causes inflammation in the shoulder area, and it has been known to send many people straight to a physical therapist in order to find relief. The condition typically affects those who are physically active or people who work at a job that requires them to complete repetitive motions. For example, if you’re an athlete who plays tennis, or if you work as a professional painter, you could be at risk of developing tendinitis in your shoulder. If you are at a high risk of developing tendinitis, it is important to remember that along with physical therapy, resting your shoulders regularly can help to prevent chronic pain.

4. Frozen shoulder

Frozen shoulder typically occurs after an injury or alongside another shoulder condition. Most physical therapists recommend that patients with frozen shoulder get plenty of rest in-between physical therapy appointments, in order to avoid developing scar tissue in the shoulder. If scar tissue does develop, the muscles surrounding the shoulder could eventually freeze up as well, restricting your full range of motion and resulting in chronic pain.

5. Impingement

Shoulder impingement can occur when the top part of the shoulder blade puts excessive pressure on the underlying soft tissues in the arm when it is lifted away from the body. As the arm lifts, the shoulder blade rubs against the tendons and bursa. If left untreated, impingement in the shoulder can result in bursitis and/or tendinitis.

Schedule a consultation with us today:

If you have sustained one of the injuries above, or if you’re looking for assistance with a difference shoulder pain condition, contact us today to schedule a consultation. Physical therapy is the ideal way to treat shoulder pain in people of all ages. Our dedicated physical therapists will address your condition and design the best treatment plan for your specific needs!

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Could Your Back Pain be Caused by a Herniated Disc?

Did you know that back pain is the highest reported area of pain across the United States? Chronic back pain is one of the most common reasons that people seek physical therapy treatment. 60-80% of people will experience back pain of some sort in their lives, and it is likely that it may be caused by a herniated disc.

A herniated disc can develop anywhere along one’s spine but it most commonly occurs in the lower back. The pain can range in severity, but our licensed physical therapists can help you find quick relief. If you are looking for a natural, easy, and effective way to manage your back pain, schedule a consultation with TheraFit today!

How do herniated discs occur?

Spinal discs are soft and rubbery pads located between the bony vertebrae that help make up the spinal column. They are made of a thick outer ring of cartilage and an inner gel-like substance, designed to work as shock absorbers. Your spinal discs work to allow the back to bend with ease and they help protect your spinal cord and the delicate nerves on your back.

If the cartilage in your spinal disc somehow tears or develops a defect, the inner gel-like substance, also known as the “nucleus,” can break through. This bulging or herniation can then put pressure on the nerves, resulting in intense pain. In fact, even small amounts of pressure on your spinal nerves can cause pain, numbness, or weakness.

Herniated discs in the lower back can be particularly painful because they put pressure on the sciatic nerve, which can result in sciatica. The sciatic nerve is actually made up of several spinal nerve branches that travel from the spine down to the leg. If the sciatic nerve becomes pinched, pain can radiate from the buttocks area, down throughout the back of the leg, and into the shin and foot. Luckily, physical therapy can work to reduce the pain caused by this condition.

When you are young, your spinal discs have a high water-content level, made up of almost 80% water. However, as you age, the water content in your spinal discs lowers. This causes the discs to become less pliable, thus increasing the risk of tears or other defects. Some of the other common causes of herniated discs include:

  • Repetitive twisting movements.
  • Heavy or incorrect lifting.
  • Traumatic injury.
  • High-impact sports.
  • Excessive body weight or obesity.

How do I know if I have a herniated disc?

Symptoms associated with a herniated disc may vary, depending on where the injured disc is located. Some of the most common symptoms people experience with a herniated disc include:

  • Pain that intensifies when bending, sitting, coughing, or sneezing.
  • Weakness in the legs.
  • Pain when bending or twisting.
  • Numbness, tingling, or burning in the back, buttock, legs, and/or feet.

If you are experiencing any or all of these symptoms, you may have a herniated disc. Fortunately, physical therapy can help relieve pain due to a herniated disc or any other back pain issues. We recommend scheduling a consultation with one of our physical therapists as soon as possible, in order to treat the pain before it intensifies.

Relieve your back pain with physical therapy:

Physical therapy is non-invasive, safe, and successful in treating patients living with back pain. Our physical therapists are highly trained in specific methods and modalities aimed at alleviating your pain, stimulating blood flow, reducing your inflammation, and restoring your range of motion.

Schedule your consultation today for an effective way to recover from whatever condition may be causing your pain. Your back will be happy you did!

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Relieve Your Lower Back Pain with These 3 Simple Steps

If you have been living with lower back pain, you know how limiting it can be. While it may seem simple to relieve the pain with prescription medications, our current opioid epidemic has left people in search of less harmful solutions. Fortunately, physical therapy can be that very solution.

A study published by BMC Health Services states that physical therapy has been known to prevent habit-forming dependencies on prescription medication and reduce the overall health cost that a patient will have to pay for pain relief. Additionally, physical therapy focuses not only on the pain you are currently facing, but also on preventing your pain from returning in the future.

Your physical therapist will work closely with you provide simple pain-relief strategies that you can carry into your daily life, even after your treatment sessions are complete. 3 of these strategies include:

1. Alternating between hot and cold remedies

Alternating hot and cold compresses or packs on your lower back can help in providing significant pain relief. If you prefer one remedy over the other, it is not necessary to alternate every time, but often alternating the two extremes can help provide a fuller range of benefits.

Heat works to increase your circulation, and when your body experiences that extra blood flow, your healing properties are initiated in your bloodstream. Hot compresses and packs also ease pain by blocking the painful “signals” that run from the nerves in your lower back to your brain. However, cold packs can also come to the rescue with their ability to numb pain, halt spasms, and reduce swelling in the affected area.

During physical therapy, you’ll receive expert applications of these ice and heat therapies. Your physical therapist can also recommend the best types of hot or cold remedies for your specific condition. As a general rule, ice packs and heating pads are good all-around options, as both are effective, inexpensive, and readily available.

2. Working those hamstrings

While it is not something that back pain sufferers always consider, your hamstring muscles can play a key role in whether or not your lower back joints become over-stressed. When the backs of your upper thighs are too tight, your lower back has to work overtime, in order to compensate. Stretching your hamstrings helps to lengthen those muscles, which can help to soothe your lower back — especially when it’s in spasm.

A physical therapy session can help you identify specific stretches for your hamstring muscles, and will help in explaining how the two muscles affect one another. In the meantime, try bending over and reaching for your toes twice a day. Don’t strain as you reach down, and try not to lock your knees. If you feel any pain at the outset, discontinue the exercise, and talk to your physical therapist about alternative hamstring lengthening exercises.

3. Balancing your activity with rest

Bed rest is a common initial prescription for lower back pain in some cases. It is especially true if your pain comes from an injury or re-injury. In fact, resting while applying ice packs is a time-honored way of reducing swelling in the first day or two. However, for chronic lower back pain, moving around is a much better medicine than lying around. Physical activity releases your natural endorphins, which have both mood-lifting and pain-killing properties.

Of course, it is important not to overdo your workouts before consulting with your physical therapist. Keep it simple by taking a light walk or getting some household chores done, in order to limber up your back and release those helpful endorphins. If a brace helps in relieving your pain, wear it to support your lower back as you move.

Physical therapy is an important exercise option. It delivers both the benefit of exercise and the watchful eye of a professional to make sure you are using proper technique and remaining sage. Your physical therapist can warn you about moves that risk re-injury and will work with you on both flexibility and strengthening moves. These exercises are meant to build up the muscles that support your spine, in order to ease pain on your lower back. They also help provide greater range-of-motion as you work through that back stiffness.

Find relief today:

If you are in need of extra assistance for managing our lower back pain, don’t hesitate to contact our office today. One of our dedicated physical therapists will be happy to meet with you to discuss treatment and simple lifestyle changes that can help decrease the severity and frequency of your lower back pain episodes. Call TheraFit Physical Therapy today to get started on your path toward lower back pain relief!

5 Ways to Relieve Back and Neck Pain

There are common causes of both back pain and neck pain. Changes in the spine’s anatomy often cause back pain. There may be lumbar disc herniation, lumbar degenerative disc disease, osteoarthritis or sacroiliac joint dysfunction. Disc herniation occurs when the gel-like interior of the disc leaks outward and irritates the nerve roots. It typically causes a stabbing pain in the back of the legs and back pain. Wear and tear on the spinal discs can lead to lumbar degenerative disc disease. It causes low-level back pain. Osteoarthritis is a wear and tear of the facet joints in the spine. Friction can cause a pinched nerve from osteoarthritis. And when the sacroiliac joint has too much or too little motion, it can cause lower back pain.

Muscle strain is a common cause of neck pain. It can be due to sleeping in awkward positions, whiplash or poor posture. Other common causes of neck pain include cervical osteoarthritis, cervical degenerative disc disease and cervical herniated disc. Back pain and neck pain can range from moderate to severe. If you’re experiencing back pain or neck pain, call Therafit today to see how physical therapy can help you live a pain-free life. Get pain relief with help from our skilled physical therapists.

How Physical Therapy Can Deliver Pain Relief for Back Pain and Neck Pain

Physical therapy is a common treatment for pain relief in the cervical area and lumbar area. The goals and benefits of physical therapy for neck pain and back pain include:

  1. Improving neck and back range of motion- By engaging in flexibility exercises in the neck and back area, you’ll be able to move easier.
  2. Reducing pain and stiffness in the back and neck area- Passive treatments by a physical therapist will accelerate healing and lessen pain.
  3. Developing strengthening of the neck and back- With specific physical exercises, you’ll be building up the muscles in the neck and back areas.
  4. Developing strategies to prevent neck pain and back pain from recurring- Learn proper body mechanics to avoid future injury.
  5. Improving the quality of life- With physical therapy, you’ll be able to return to your regular routine must faster.

The two forms of physical therapy are passive treatments and active treatments. Passive treatments for neck pain include electrotherapy, ice packs, ultrasound, massage therapy and heat therapy. These treatments help reduce pain, inflammation and stiffness. Active physical therapy treatments include exercises and stretches. By engaging in active exercises with a physical therapist, strength and flexibility are improved in the neck, and the muscles become less painful. In addition, stress on the cervical spine is reduced.

Like physical therapy treatments for neck pain, back pain physical therapy treatments include both passive and active methods for the patient. “Current medical literature suggests moderate to strong evidence supporting the benefits of physical therapy’s role in reducing neck pain and back pain and improving range of motion.”

How Back Pain and Neck Pain Are Diagnosed

If you’re experiencing neck or back pain, a doctor will perform a physical exam and may even order X-rays or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). An MRI provides pictures of blood vessels, ligaments, tendons and soft tissues. It can provide the root cause of your back pain or neck pain. It’s quite common for a doctor to recommend physical therapy to treat neck and back pain

Back and neck pain can lead to a loss of productivity. It’s a common cause for disability. It can also lead to nerve damage, depression and even weight gain. If you’re suffering from back pain or neck pain, it’s time to take action. Get pain relief with the help of a physical therapist. A physical therapist will develop a personalized treatment plan just for you.

Why suffer when physical therapy can give you pain relief? Call our Fayetteville or Hazel Green offices today to see how physical therapy can help you live a pain-free life.

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