Shoulder pain is no joke, and if left unattended, it can significantly limit your work activities and hobbies and greatly impact your quality of life.
The good news is that many shoulder injuries can be prevented, especially if you take the right precautions. Let’s take a look at the various ways you can prevent many common shoulder ailments.
Stretching can be a great help when it comes to combating shoulder pain. Dr. Goldberg considers it to be the single best thing you can do to keep your body and joints healthy, especially as we age. It keeps the muscles, tendons and ligaments strong and flexible. Our bodies are meant to move. If there is no motion, then the muscles, tendons and ligaments will eventually tighten leading to strains and pain in the joints. Lack of flexibility is what causes people to look and feel “old” as they move.
A regular stretching routine can help combat the many aches and pains we get as we age. Dr. Goldberg recommends that you spend about one-third of your total exercise time stretching. If you have an hour to spend exercising, spend 20 minutes stretching, 20 minutes on cardio, such as an exercise bike, elliptical or speed walking, and 20 minutes on resistance exercises, such as weight lifting or strength machines.
Many trainers recommend a few minutes of light cardio before initiating the stretching routine as a light warm-up before an exercise session.
If you are getting into a new workout routine, ease into it. Start with simple stretches and progress as your flexibility increases over the next few weeks. Don’t overdo it at the beginning. And if you’re lifting weights, start with a low amount and go up from there. Listen to how your body responds to these changes.
It’s also necessary to strengthen your back and core muscles as they support everything else. Strong core muscles have been shown to support the shoulders, thus, reducing the strain in your shoulder blade and rotator cuff that commonly causes pain.
After an extended break from your exercise routine, such as after a serious injury or shoulder surgery, you need to back off the weights and intensity compared to your prior level. If you pick it up exactly where you left off, you are at risk of reinjuring yourself, further delaying your progress and achieving your goals. Starting slow is the way to go.
Don’t Ignore the Pain
Having a shoulder injury simply tells you that something isn’t right. Pay close attention to any sort of discomfort – even minor pain that is persistent can signal an underlying issue. Don’t assume that it will just vanish, especially if it repeatedly occurs.
Consider visiting a doctor if:
- The pain has lasted for more than a few days
- The pain keeps you from sleeping
- The pain occurs repeatedly with the same type of movement, such as raising your arms over your head to reach for something
- The pain keeps you from performing essential everyday activities, such as dressing, cooking and personal hygiene
- The pain causes redness or swelling in the joints
- The pain is causing you to regularly take pain medicines, such as Tylenol and Ibuprofen
Schedule a Consultation
Are you struggling with shoulder pain or a shoulder injury? Dr. Steven S. Goldberg can help. We will listen to your symptoms and concerns and build a treatment plan that suits your needs. Dr. Goldberg is one of the most experienced shoulder specialists in Florida and has successfully treated thousands of patients with shoulder and arm symptoms. As an orthopedic surgeon who specialized in sports-related injuries, he has seen it all and he can have you feeling your best as soon as possible.