can chiropractic help rotator cuff

If you have ever had a rotator cuff injury, you know how much it can affect your day-to-day activities. A rotator cuff injury can make performing routine tasks painful or even unbearable due to the pain, stiffness, and inflammation it causes in your shoulder.

There are a lot of suggestions and therapies for rotator cuff injuries that do not involve surgery, but sometimes it is necessary. Thankfully, people who hurt their rotator cuff can get better with expert chiropractic care instead of surgery or prescription drugs. But how can chiropractic help rotator cuff injuries?

In this article, we will give you a clear answer to this question. We will also discuss the reasons and symptoms of an injured rotator cuff and when you should seek help. Keep reading before deciding on any particular treatment plan for your rotator cuff.

What Is a Rotator Cuff?

The rotator cuff is an array of connective tissues that help keep the shoulder joint stable and allow it to move freely. Every time the arm is raised, rotated, or lifted, the rotator cuff is involved. When it comes to rotation and range of motion, the shoulder joint is unmatched. The tendons and muscles that make up the rotator cuff are what allow for all that mobility.

The rotator cuff’s four muscles and tendons further stabilize the arm in the shoulder socket. This is important because the shoulder joint is a ball-and-socket joint. It should have a snug fit for the top of the arm bone.

How Is the Rotator Cuff Injured?

The rotator cuff can move in a lot of different ways. If one or more of its tissues get hurt, it can cause muscles or ligaments to become overstretched or torn or even the shoulder to become dislocated. So, it’s a grave mistake to ignore the potential reasons for the rotator cuff injury.

The rotator cuff can be injured in several ways. Let’s look at them:

  • One of the most common causes of damage to the rotator cuff is repetitive movement. If you do the same motion over and over again, like in carpentry, tennis, or baseball, you might hurt your rotator cuff. Over time, this repeated action may cause the tendon tissue to progressively deteriorate.
  • Accidents, falls, and heavy lifting are other common causes of torn rotator cuff, along with recurring motion injuries. In most of these acute injury situations, the tendon starts to fray and can eventually lead to complete rotator cuff tear.

Apart from the above reasons, there are some risk factors that make rotator cuff injuries more probable, including

  • Aging (it happens more often to people over 60)
  • Having certain medical conditions, such as tendonitis, bursitis, or arthritis
  • Being involved in a job that requires repetitive overhead movements
  • Having a history of the injury in your family

What Are the Symptoms of Rotator Cuff Syndrome?

Every rotator cuff injury is different. Still, there are some common signs and symptoms that you might have injured your rotator cuff, including:

  • Soreness or clicking in the shoulder when the arm is at shoulder height or above the head
  • Experiencing discomfort in the shoulder that travels all the way to the elbow
  • A nagging ache that gets worse when you raise your arm above shoulder height
  • Resting shoulder pain (common in cases of serious rotator cuff tears)
  • Weakness or discomfort in the shoulder muscles while lifting or reaching
  • Trouble placing a hand behind the back or head due to shoulder pain
  • Shoulder pain while trying to get a seat belt on

can chiropractor help rotator cuff injury

When to Seek Treatment for Rotator Cuff Injury?

The symptoms we just mentioned can be indicators of something serious, but not always. When you have worked out too hard, your shoulder may hurt. Usually, all you need is some time to rest and heal. However, if the pain worsens and does not improve with rest, ice, and pain relievers, it is time to seek medical attention.

It is also important to see a doctor right away if you suddenly feel a lot of pain or lose the ability to move. These injuries can get worse over time. So, you should get medical help right away to keep the damage from getting worse or to avoid getting hurt again in a way that is worse than the first injury.

To figure out what kind of injury it is, doctors may ask about the person’s job-related physical activities. They may also check the patient’s strength and range of motion to make sure the patient does not have pinched nerves or arthritis. Image scans, such as x-rays, MRIs, or ultrasounds, can show a number of different causes of chronic pain and inflammation. These scans can also point out damage to rotator cuff tendons and muscles.

How Can Chiropractic Help Rotator Cuff Injuries?

After the reason for the pain has been found, the next step is to go for the sustainable and right kind of treatment option. If a rotator cuff injury is suspected, chiropractic therapy may be more effective than other invasive options. Here’s what you can expect from chiropractic treatment for rotator cuff injury:

  • Resolve Symptoms

Chiropractors try to get rid of your symptoms as quickly and safely as possible so you can get back to your normal activities and routines. Stiff muscles can be soothed and relaxed with chiropractic care. A chiropractor can use ultrasound therapy, electrostimulation therapy, and chiropractic adjustments for this purpose.

  • Pain Management

If you have a rotator cuff injury, chiropractic care will also focus on giving you natural ways to manage your pain that work well. Chiropractors can help improve your body’s natural ways of relieving pain and discomfort after an injury. Their gentle manipulations can reduce inflammation in the area of concern and alleviate pain. You won’t have to endure the unpleasant side effects of medication.

  • Joint Mobility

It’s common to experience a lack of mobility and flexibility following a rotator cuff incident. After managing pain, your chiropractor may help you regain a normal range of motion and mobility in your injured shoulder. You can expect to receive recommendations for stretches, exercises, and soft tissue mobilization from the chiropractor.

Besides, chiropractic treatment may also keep scar tissue from building up. If left untreated, this can cause long-term pain and stiffness.

  • Rehabilitation

Chiropractic care won’t stop at treating your symptoms and mobility. When you go to the chiropractor for an injured rotator cuff, they will also help you through rehabilitation. To ensure they meet your unique requirements for a full recovery, chiropractors design an individualized care plan. You can expect to be guided on the following:

  • Exercises that you will have to practice regularly at home
  • Modifying your routine to prevent actions that could worsen your shoulder pain
  • Education about your injury’s nature to help you manage your expectations and stay motivated


Rotator cuff injuries can result from age-related degeneration, accidents, or repetitive motion. The symptoms of this injury include soreness in the shoulder, weakness, and limited range of motion. If you think you might have an injured rotator cuff, you should see a doctor right away. However, invasive options do come with their share of side-effects.

The good news is that chiropractic care helps you avoid the need of getting something invasive done. Chiropractors treat people who have hurt their rotator cuff by reducing swelling and stiffness. They aim to make joints more mobile again and plan rehabilitation exercises that are unique to each person. Their goal is to help people fully recover and avoid getting hurt again.

However, not everyone who claims to be a chiropractor should be blindly trusted to treat an injured rotator cuff. You should only rely on trusted chiropractors for the job. At The Brost Clinic, we have won many awards and have a strong reputation for being the best in the business, thanks to our trained chiropractors. So, we confidently invite you to trust us to heal your injured rotator cuff.

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