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All Posts in Category: Upper Limbs

Shoulder Pain in Breastfeeding Mothers

As a nursing mother, there is so much to juggle in the first few months after giving birth. Sleepless nights, diaper changes, finding a good nanny or maid, hosting visitors and guests are a few of the things to contend with externally. Internally , a lot is also going on and the focus is usually on the baby while mothers tend to neglect themselves. Remember a healthy mommy is a healthy baby and we know you want to take care of yourself without using using medications.


Shoulder pain

Shoulder pain is a common complaint in nursing mothers. Shoulder pain can occur either because they repetitively use the same arm to carry the baby or let the baby sleep off on their arms especially while nursing at night. This places parts of the shoulder joint under stress and the constant irritation of this region can lead to shoulder pain. Most commonly, bursitis or shoulder impingement are the most commonly occurring diagnosis in breastfeeding mom’s. Mom’s shoulder is also a term which has been used to describe the cluster of symptoms associated with breastfeeding. This pain can be diffuse or specific to a region, it can also triggered by specific movements such as reaching behind to wear seatbelt, lying on that side, trying to carry the baby to the back.


Guidelines for managing shoulder pain while breastfeeding

Below are a few guidelines on how to minimise the occurrence of shoulder pain when nursing

  1. Alternate sides. Most people tend to carry their babies on their right side because they are right handed. However, to minimise the chances of injuring the shoulder region, it is better to alternate the side on which you carry the baby switching from the left and right sides frequently.
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What is Frozen Shoulder or Adhesive Capsulitis?

Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis is when the shoulder capsule becomes inflamed and the fibrotic adhesions limit shoulder movement resulting in pain and stiffness.

There are three stages of the frozen shoulder symptoms

  1. Freezing: initially characterised by pain around the shoulder, it is them followed by progressive loss of range of movement
  2. Frozen: There is minimal pain with no further loss of range neither is there any gain in range of motion. Pain is noticeable usually at end range only.
  3. Thawing: There is a gradual return of range of movement and there would also be weakness due to disuse



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What is shoulder rotator cuff injury?

The shoulder girdle has a relatively unstable ball and socket joint and it uses surrounding muscles to stabilise it. The rotator cuff muscles form a cusp around the shoulder joint and are responsible for shoulder rotation aside other movement in the upper limb. There are four muscles which make up the rotator cuff: subscapularis, supraspinatus, infraspinatus and the teres minor. These muscles or their tendons are susceptible to inflammation, tears, impingement and tears.

Some of the commonly encountered rotator cuff injuries are:

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What is Erbs Palsy or Brachial Plexus Injury?

Erbs Palsy is a paralysis or weakness of the muscles of the arm following an injury to a plexus of nerves in the upper limb region called the brachial plexus. An injury to part of this plexus results in weakness or paralysis of certain muscles in the arm. Though there are different types of injuries, Erbs palsy is the most frequently occurring one usually associated with assisted childbirth. The birth injury typically occurs when there is a stretch on the shoulder, arm or neck while assisting with delivery. This injury affects the C5-C6 nerve root and its deformity is commonly described as waiter’s tip deformity. Trauma, dislocation and gunshot can also cause brachial plexus injury in adults.

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