Shoulder Instability and Dislocation

What is a shoulder dislocation or shoulder instability?

A shoulder dislocation occurs when the ball of the upper arm bone (head of the humerus) is unable to remain in the shoulder socket (glenoid fossa). Shoulder instability commonly occurs when a person suffers from repeated shoulder trauma and dislocations, however, can also result from repetitive overhead movements or ligament laxity. The result is often described as a feeling of weakness and uncertainty of the shoulder when performing certain movements.

How are shoulder dislocations and shoulder instability treated? 

Treatment for shoulder dislocations and instability is often conservative, however, under some circumstances, a surgical procedure may be considered. Conservative treatment is often run by an Accredited Exercise Physiologist and will involve individualised exercises that aim to relieve pain, minimise swelling, restore strength, muscular control, range of motion and posture.

How can an Exercise Physiologist help? 

An Exercise Physiologist can perform strength testing in addition to a postural and functional assessment to prescribe the most beneficial exercise relating to your current shoulder condition. An exercise physiologist will provide guidance and education throughout the rehabilitation process to ensure exercises are being performed correctly and safely to gain the best outcomes possible.

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