Arm pain most often develops after an injury, whether it happens suddenly or develops gradually over months of repetitive movement. But you can have a healthy arm and still experience arm pain when a nerve is damaged in your neck. The expert team at Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine Center determines the cause of your pain and provides effective relief with customized physical therapy. If you need help, schedule a same-day or next-day appointment. Call the office in Greenbelt, Olney, Bowie, Riverdale, Glen Burnie, Laurel, or Silver Spring, Maryland, or book an appointment online today.
Sudden trauma and repetitive use injuries represent the top causes of arm pain. A few specific conditions that contribute to the problem include:
Sudden pain in your left arm is also a sign of a possible heart attack. Seek emergency medical care if your pain quickly worsens or you also have symptoms such as chest pain, shortness of breath, or pain in your back, neck, or jaw.
The vertebrae in your neck can develop degenerative conditions such as herniated discs, spinal stenosis, facet joint arthritis, and degenerative disc disease.
These neck problems can pinch the spinal nerves, causing a condition called cervical radiculopathy. With pinched cervical nerves, you can experience pain and tingling in your arms and hands. In severe cases, a pinched nerve causes numbness in your arm.
After determining the cause of your pain, your physical therapist may begin your treatment by limiting your arm movement. Since your arms see a lot of activity during the day, you may need to temporarily restrict your mobility to give the underlying problem time to heal.
Your physical therapy may begin with gentle massage and passive range of motion exercises, with your therapist carefully moving your arm instead of you actively exercising.
As your pain and inflammation improve, your therapy progresses to include exercises and modalities that strengthen the soft tissues and restore the full range of motion.
At any time during your arm pain treatment, your therapist may employ a range of modalities, from electrical stimulation and ultrasound therapy to manual stretching. Depending on the cause of your pain, they may recommend instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization (IASTM) using HawkGrips or traction.
IASTM treats soft tissue injuries such as tennis elbow and ulnar nerve entrapment. Your therapist uses a specialized device to manipulate your skin and underlying soft tissues. The treatment accelerates healing, decreases pain, and improves mobility by breaking down scar tissue that limits muscle movement.
No matter what causes your arm pain, physical therapy can help. To schedule an appointment, call Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine Center or use the online booking feature today.