Falling is one of the most common ways people injure themselves, and it’s easy to injure the shoulder during a fall. You could land on the shoulder directly, and this can injure bones, muscles and other structures. Breaking your fall with your hands can also lead to injuries in muscles and tendons in the shoulder. Some people may notice that it hurts to raise their arm after falling on their shoulder, and there are three issues that can cause this type of pain.
One reason it might hurt to raise your arm after falling on your shoulder is you’ve developed tendinitis. This is when a tendon becomes irritated or inflamed, and overstretching or impact from a fall can cause these symptoms. The tendons in your shoulder attach to muscles that raise the arm, and it’s likely that this movement will cause shoulder pain. Treatments like rest and physical therapy can help reduce your pain and restore your ability to move the arm normally.
Bursitis can also lead to pain when raising the arm after a fall that affects the shoulder. Bursae are pillowlike pads that provide cushioning between muscles and bones, and a fall can cause the bursae in your shoulder to become inflamed and painful. When this happens, the condition is called bursitis. This issue can make it painful to raise the arm, and it can cause this because raising your arm causes the shoulder muscles to rub against the bursae. If the bursae are already painful because of a fall, this rubbing can simply create more pain.
- Rotator cuff impingement
The rotator cuff is a group of four muscles and tendons, and it helps keep the arm seated in the shoulder socket as the arm moves. This structure can be stretched too far by a fall. When this happens, there can be swelling in the shoulder, and this reduces the space between the rotator cuff and a bone called the acromion. This bone branches off of the shoulder blade and joins with the collarbone. The reduced space means that the rotator cuff is more likely to rub against the acromion, and this can lead to more irritation and pain when lifting your arm.
Get help from Arrow Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation for shoulder pain
If you recently fell on your shoulder and it hurts to raise your arm, our team at Arrow Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation can help. We’ll start your therapy process with a complimentary screening, and this allows us to find out what’s causing your pain. Next, we’ll use this information to construct an individualized treatment plan to meet your needs, and some of the therapy methods used in this plan may include:
Take the next step to get our help with your shoulder pain. Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.