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Why You Shouldn’t Neglect Your Shoulder Pain



Pain free movement is often taken for granted. It isn’t until you reach out to brush your hair or pull on a sweater that you realize how crucial having a full range of motion is! Without a proper treatment plan, that annoying pain can become an incapacitating injury. In this article you’ll learn the anatomy of impingement syndrome, and what steps you can take to treat it before surgical intervention is your only option.

Every body has a different and unique body. For ages this saying has been used to help build self esteem, and anatomically it makes sense. In the shoulder girdle, there is a bone process on each end of the collarbone called an acromion. For 59% of people, this bone structure is flat or slightly curved. In the remaining 41% of people, this bone is shaped like a hook. If you are in the latter fraction of people, your hooked acromion can cause painful impingement over time with poor posture and overuse. 

If you’re noticing that you can’t raise your arm without pain, it’s time to see your local registered massage therapist. The subacromial bursa (a little fluid filled balloon between your muscles and bone) is usually the first structure to become irritated. As the shoulder impingement advances the muscle tendons can become inflamed (tendonitis) and fibrosis forms. While this damage is reversible, the next progression is tendinous rupture. At this stage, the tiny acromion bone often is undergoing bony changes and surgery may be required to be able to move your arm without pain.

Why force yourself to live with shoulder pain when it will just cause further damage to your body? A massage therapist can treat the hypertoned and compressed muscles by utilizing tendinous release and pressure point release to decrease the tension and allow better slide and glide between the body’s structures. At later stages of compression, massage can be helpful in decreasing the fibrotic tissue by bringing fresh blood flow to the tissues and realigning collagen in the inflamed tendons. At Burrard Massage Therapy, we don’t believe our treatment ends after your session.  Besides performing a deep tissue massage, your therapist can inform you on homecare and ergonomic work choices that will allow you to take your health care into your own hands.