Feeling tender on the outside of your elbow?
Having pain in your elbow when you extend your wrist?
You may be suffering from Tennis Elbow, technically known as Lateral Epicondylitis.
What is tennis elbow?
Tennis elbow is an inflammation of the muscles that extend your wrist. You feel the pain on the outside of your elbow because that is where the muscles attach to the bone. Movements of the wrist may cause pain. Lifting heavy objects may be painful and you may notice that your grip is not as strong as it once was.
Common causes of tennis elbow:
- Using their forearms muscles
- Poor technique
Now what can cause this inflammation? Tennis elbow is quite common among individuals who play racket sports, an example being Tennis. This is because the muscles of the wrist are repetitively used, resulting in an inflammation. It is not just individuals who play racket sports who are at risk of developing Tennis Elbow. Individuals who use their forearm muscles repetitively on a regular basis, potentially due to their occupation, may also develop an inflammation of the muscles. This is especially true if they carry out their activity with poor technique or if it is an activity they are not accustomed too.
What to do:
How would you know for sure if it is Tennis Elbow? A doctor or physiotherapist may assess your elbow and confirm if that is the valid diagnosis. From here, an appropriate treatment plan will be given.
Since Tennis Elbow is an inflammation, a certain amount of rest will be required. This means, individuals should try avoid activities that would aggravate the pain. If Tennis causes the pain to hike, it would be best to give it a rest for a couple of days. Ice on the outer part of the elbow may help target the inflammation. Your doctor may prescribe some pain killers as well. It is important to realize that you should not stop using your wrist; simply avoid things that would worsen the pain. The physiotherapist plays a key role in accelerating the inflammatory process. They can provide you with some techniques to avoid worsening the pain. The therapist would begin with some exercises to make sure that you still move your wrist, but in a pain free manner. When you are ready, and the inflammation has passed, the therapist will start giving you exercises to make your forearm muscles stronger. This is important for it decreases the likelihood of having Tennis Elbow again in the future. Massage can also be provided for temporary relief of the pain and to relax any muscles that may have tensed up.
You should not have to stop doing what you love because of pain. So, after following your exercises, you will be better than ever and more prepared to tackle the activity that brought on the pain initially! Get back to what you love sooner by addressing the pain early on!
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