The complex group of tendons and muscles supporting your joint is called a rotator cuff and is often the most affected part of your shoulder. It is essential to work with sports medicine specialists like James Lee, Jr., MD if you are an athlete to ensure you always get an accurate diagnosis of your shoulder injury and the best plan to recover. Also, such experts can help you understand how you can avoid rotator cuff injuries or prevent your situation from getting worse. Prevention is cheaper than treatment. The following techniques can help you protect your rotator cuff.
1. Warm Up Before Exercise
Stretching and strengthening your muscles before engaging in exercises or other physical activities can help you protect the muscles and tendons on your shoulder. Ensure you practice mild exercises to get your muscles ready slowly. You are more likely to experience injuries when you make your muscles work when they are cold. But warming up will improve blood flow in your muscles and make them more flexible.
You can also strengthen your rotator cuff by limiting repetitive movements and lifting weights. However, ensure you have a trainer, or you can focus your activity on the small and large muscles in your rotator cuff.
2. Manage Injuries Right Away
Another way of protecting your rotator cuff is taking care of any injuries right away. Understand that there is a problem any time your shoulder hurts. Therefore, please do not ignore it and keep on with your activity. Please take it easy, slow down or rest for a while. Although it might be hard skipping your favorite game, it is for the best. If you insist on doing too much, you might risk a more severe injury to your rotator cuff.
3. Make Healthy Choices
You can make confident, healthy choices to help your rotator cuff remain intact. This includes losing extra weight so that you can relieve pressure on your joints and bones. Also, drink more water and eat more vegetables, lean proteins, and fruits to help your cells function usually. When you also quit smoking, it helps your tissues repair and recover rapidly. And when you get quality sleep, your body will always recover from everyday stressors. Additionally, it would help to focus on your overall health and manage other health conditions to lower your chances of getting injured in your rotator cuff.
4. Work Smart
You might not have to skip your activities, but you can work smart. Whatever major work or activity you have to do, the problem will only occur when you overdo it. Therefore, work with an expert to understand how you can achieve your goals without straining your body. For example, you can spread some activities over several weekends instead of doing them altogether. You can also spread a specific project over several days where possible, and it will help.
5. Pay Attention to Your Body
Your body will always communicate with you, so you must pay attention. If you are resting but you feel it is not helping, it is time to seek advanced treatment. The injury might be worse than you thought, and waiting longer could only worsen. Knowing when to seek medical intervention helps you ensure your rotator cuff injury does not get worse.
If you are enduring rotator cuff injury or wish to learn how to prevent future injuries, Dr. Lee of Orange Orthopedic Associates can help you. You can make an in-office visit, call or book your consultation appointment online.