Shoulder issues are amongst the most common work-related injuries that can put a serious damper on both your professional and personal life. Below are 4 types of shoulder injuries as well as some information about what causes them and whether or not you are at risk.
1. Rotator Cuff Tear
The rotator cuff supports the ball of the shoulder within the joint and assists with arm movements. Workers that often use their shoulders to do repetitive lifting or overhead activities are at a greater risk for tearing the rotator cuff. Some common symptoms include pain in the shoulder, pain when rising or lowering the arm, weakness with lifting, and a cracking sensation when the shoulder is moved.
2. Shoulder Impingement Syndrome
Shoulder Impingement Syndrome occurs when there is inflaming of the shoulder cuff tendons. It is generally caused by conducting repeated overhead activities. Shoulder Impingement Syndrome can affect one’s day-to-day life, causing pain when reaching high or up behind the back. Symptoms include pain, weakness, immobility in the injured shoulder, and grinding or popping sensations during shoulder movement.
3. Shoulder Instability
Shoulder Instability occurs when the shoulder joint is too loose and can slide around in the socket. Shoulder instability is usually caused by a shoulder that has been previously dislocated. As a result of dislocation, the ligaments that hold the shoulder in the socket often becomes stretched or torn, even if the shoulder feels normal after relocation. Shoulder instability can lead to repeated dislocations during every day activities. Sometimes, shoulder instability can even occur without a dislocation. People that repeatedly work with their shoulders can gradually stretch the joint capsule and are at risk for shoulder instability. Symptoms include frequent slipping of the shoulder (often when the hand is above the head), a pinching feeling in the shoulder and frequent dislocations.
4. Shoulder Sprains
A shoulder sprain occurs when the shoulder ligaments become torn. This can happen as a result of unnatural twisting, falling, and receiving direct blows. Symptoms for shoulder sprains include pain that increases with movement, swelling, bruising, and limited shoulder movement. Anyone who does frequent heavy lifting is at risk for shoulder sprains.
If you think you may have received one of these injuries, contact a doctor immediately. If your injury occurred on the job, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. If you have any questions about an injury you received on the job, never hesitate to contact a competent workers’ compensation attorney.