Shoulder Pain Physical Therapy and Exercises for the Shoulder

Scroll down for the 22 most common questions about shoulder pain.

Don’t ignore shoulder pain in NYC contact Fifth Avenue. Let our highly qualified, and experienced Physical Therapists diagnose your shoulder pain and give you the treatment you need. We have 4 locations across NYC (Astoria, Bayside, Grand Central and The Hamptons) as well as offering home care visits.

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Read about Rotator Cuff Tears and treatment exercises on our dedicated page

Here we discuss physical therapy for shoulder pain, the common causes, and when to see your doctor.

The shoulder is the most movable joint in the body. It is made up of a unique ball-and-socket joint with three main bones namely the humerus, the clavicle, and the scapula.

The shoulder has a wide and versatile range of motion.

Physical therapy for shoulder pain

woman doing physical therapy shoulder exercise

  • Physical therapy is a non-surgical procedure that helps you with your shoulder pain.
  • Initially, the physical therapist does a complete evaluation and tests using various techniques.
  • If your shoulder condition requires surgical treatment, consult with your general practitioner’s guidelines intently to protect the shoulder. Post-operative physical therapy can assist with regaining normal movement and energy after your surgical procedure.
  • Generally, physical therapy strengthens and increases flexibility. If you are suffering from acute pain a simple exercise like shoulder blade shrug exercise and shoulder blade squeeze will help you to reduce the pain.
  • It is important to follow your physical therapist’s advice and instructions intently. Ask questions when you have any.

Purpose of the shoulder joint

  • The shoulder joint is the most flexible joint that makes the shoulder move forward and backwards and allows the arms to rotate, move up and away from the body.
  • The variety of shoulder movement is by the rotator cuff. It is made up of four tendons which are the tissues that connect muscles to bones.

Women feeling shoulder whilst doing sporting activity.

Common causes of shoulder pain

  1. There are many conditions that cause shoulder pain. The most common cause of shoulder pain is rotator cuff tendinitis.
  2. Bone spurs are bony projections that are developed along the rims of the shoulder bones causing severe pain.
  3. Swelling of the bursa sacs, that protect the shoulders or swelling of tendons can also cause pain.
  4. Pinching a nerve in the shoulder or neck will give a sharp pain.
  5. Any injury or breaking a shoulder or arm bone, frozen shoulder, and dislocated shoulder are the other common causes of shoulder pain.

Read more about Frozen Shoulder in our blog.

Be careful when shoulder pain occurs

  • If you are suffering from sudden severe shoulder pain, please don’t ignore it. It might be a sign of a heart attack. The other associated symptoms of shoulder pain are trouble breathing, excessive sweating, and pain in the neck. If you think your pain is related to a heart attack, you should stop reading and call 911 immediately.
  • Contact your doctor if you injured your shoulder and it’s swollen, bleeding, or has any exposed tissue.
  • Whenever you feel heat and tenderness around the shoulder joint, inability to move your shoulder, and pain persists for more than a week of home treatment then it’s high time to visit your Doctor.

Fifth Avenue founder and owner Dr. Scott A.Weiss is an expert in shoulder pain. Read his contribution to Men’s Journal:

Why Does My Shoulder Crack and Pop?