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Recovery & Support for Shoulder Sprains, Strains & Tears

While you’re recovering from a shoulder sprain, strain, or tear, our doctors, rehabilitation experts, and other specialists offer support programs designed to help you heal and prevent future injuries. These include postsurgical physical therapy, acupuncture or acupressure, and sports performance evaluations.

Physical Therapy

If you’ve had surgery for a shoulder tear, your doctor may recommend physical therapy. At NYU Langone, a physical therapist teaches you movements to help relieve pain, prevent further injury, and allow you to return to your everyday routine.

As you heal during the first few weeks of treatment, a physical therapist can show you exercises that help increase flexibility and build strength in the shoulders, arms, and back. The muscles in these areas support the shoulder joint and provide it with stability and range of motion. Strengthening and stretching these muscles also helps to prevent another injury.

Physical therapy may be required for several months before the shoulder is fully healed. Making the exercises a regular part of your routine at home or in a gym will help this process along.

Mind–Body Wellness

NYU Langone offers a variety of wellness programs that may help ease your recovery. They include acupuncture and acupressure, which can reduce pain, decrease inflammation, and strengthen the immune system by enhancing blood flow.

In acupuncture, practitioners insert very thin needles into the skin, stimulating specific points on the body to alter “energy flow” and improve health. In acupressure, a type of therapeutic massage, practitioners apply pressure to specific areas on the body.

Sports Performance Evaluation

After physical or occupational therapy for a shoulder injury, your doctor may recommend that you visit NYU Langone’s Sports Performance Center. Our physiologists and sports nutritionists evaluate your strength, flexibility, and diet to personalize a fitness program that suits your needs. They offer programs for tennis and other sports that require the use of your shoulder.

Tobacco Cessation

Cigarette smoking may increase the risk of rotator cuff tears. Research indicates a link between smoking and musculoskeletal health, including an increased risk of weakened bones.

If you smoke, take steps to quit. Experts at NYU Langone’s Tobacco Cessation Programs can teach you strategies to handle situations that can trigger tobacco use and other techniques that can help you quit.

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