Shoulder Pain Relief Bozeman, MT

Shoulder Pain Relief

The shoulder is comprised of three bones – the humerus, the scapula, and the clavicle – and a complex of cartilage and connective tissue. This joint is one of the most mobile in the human body and allows circular, forward, and backward movement.

There are a number of conditions that can cause shoulder pain. The most common cause is a rotator cuff injury. People who reach overhead repeatedly, such as painters and tennis players, are most at risk for this type of injury because they tend to overuse the joint. Tendinitis, where a tendon becomes inflamed within its sheath, bursitis, where the fluid-filled sac within the joint space becomes inflamed, and tears of the cartilage or connective tissues are common injuries of the rotator cuff which often come from overuse.

Other causes of shoulder pain include a pinched nerve, frozen shoulder, or dislocated shoulder. A pinched nerve is a painful condition in which another structure impinges on a nerve. A frozen shoulder is where muscles, ligaments, and tendons stiffen and become difficult to move. With a dislocated shoulder, the head of the humerus comes out of the shoulder socket and usually has to be manually put back into place. Additionally, with age, the soft tissues around the shoulder can degenerate and cause pain.

A physical therapist will use a variety of modalities to treat shoulder conditions. Exercises generally consist of active shoulder motion, passive range of motion, using shoulder pulleys, scapular stabilization, and rotator cuff strengthening. Other modalities may include ultrasound, heat therapy, electrical stimulation, massage, joint mobilization, and cold therapy. All of these treatment modalities help decrease pain, reduce swelling, improve circulation, and decrease muscle tension.

Our certified and skilled physical therapists have helped many others recover from a shoulder injury and can help you too.

Contact Us Today at Bozeman, MT Center and find out how our therapists can help to get you out of pain.


What is the most common shoulder injury?

Sprains and strains are among the most commonly experienced overuse injuries in the shoulder area. A strain occurs when a muscle or tendon is stretched too far or torn. A sprain occurs when a ligament is stretched too far or torn. Strains and sprains can result in an ongoing shoulder pain that may make it difficult to partake in exercise or even daily tasks. If the strain or sprain is minor, it can sometimes be iced at home and healed with rest. More severe strains and sprains will often require physical therapy treatments. Additional shoulder injuries include a torn cartilage, dislocation, tendinitis, frozen shoulder, and arthritis.

How do you know if my shoulder injury is serious?

Your shoulders can accomplish several physical feats due to their structure – however, this also means that they are susceptible to an increased risk of injury because of their complexity. If something becomes damaged in the make-up of the shoulders, pain and discomfort can develop. This pain may range from a dull ache to shooting pains, depending on the severity of the condition. If you are experiencing severe pain, or pain lasting three months or longer, it could be indicative of a deeper issue.

How do I get my shoulder to stop hurting?

If your shoulder is causing you discomfort, physical therapy is the best way to ensure the highest rate of relief. Our physical therapists are highly trained to help improve the flexibility and range of motion in your shoulder, in addition to relieving your pain and discomfort. This will be done through an individualized treatment plan designed specifically for you, and may include any combination of treatment methods as your physical therapist deems fit, including manual therapy, ice and heat therapies, electrical nerve stimulation, or ultrasound. Your physical therapist will also prescribe targeted exercises and stretches to help regain your optimal shoulder function.

How can physical therapy help with shoulder pain?

Two of the biggest goals of physical therapy are 1) to alleviate your pain and 2) to improve your function. Your physical therapist will work with you to make sure that both of these are achieved throughout your physical therapy sessions. Physical therapy has been proven to manage the pain of several conditions, and in many cases, it has even been proven to eliminate shoulder pain altogether, thus making the need for harmful drugs or surgical intervention obsolete.