How Chiropractic Care Can Help Tennis Elbow
Even if you have never stepped foot onto a court, or played a racquet sport, you may end up with tennis elbow. Tennis Elbow is also known as lateral epicondylitis. It occurs along the muscle that allows extension of the wrist. It can be an extremely painful condition that can linger for weeks. Some cases can even last up to 12 months.
What are the symptoms of Tennis Elbow?
Previously, symptoms of tennis elbow primarily showed up in athletes. However, due to the increased interest in physical fitness, lateral epicondylitis is also being found in everyday exercisers. Additionally, people who perform repetitive work-related motions are prone to developing lateral epicondylitis as well.
Tennis elbow presents with several symptoms. You can develop elbow pain on the outside of the elbow an inch or so down from the bony part. Here, the tendons can get small tears where they attach to the distal humerus. The main muscle affected is the extensor carpi radialis brevis. When the muscle tendons that attach to the elbow are injured, this leads to lateral epicondylitis. Unfortunately, most of the tissue damage will then have to be evaluated with an MRI scan.
There may also be elbow pain when the person tries to extend the hand and fingers against resistance. In addition, extreme weakness in the wrist is another symptom.
I have been diagnosed with tennis elbow. Now what?
Tennis elbow is often difficult to diagnose, which can delay treatment. A correct diagnosis of lateral epicondylitis is the first step. Next, a plan to treat the condition, followed by rehab of the afflicted area, should be made. Generally, a variety of treatments are available.
Passive remedies like rest, ice, and arm braces are critical components to healing tennis elbow. First, take measures to reduce the movements that aggravate the pain. An arm brace supports and stabilizes the area to promote healing. Next, use ice at regular intervals to help minimize pain and inflammation. Lastly, you may take anti-inflammatory medication to deal with the problem. These remedies assist greatly in treating the condition, especially in the beginning.
Active remedies consist of stretching and strengthening exercises. They are vital aspects of improving the condition. People suffering from elbow pain should begin a physical therapy regimen as soon as the pain allows.
Follow a doctor’s advice for the rehab program exercises. The goal is to build strength.
A person dealing with tennis elbow may utilize a variety of medicinal remedies to manage pain and inflammation. Over-the-counter pain relievers and steroid injections are commonly used to treat the condition. Following doctor’s orders when taking medications is strongly recommended.
Alternative remedies also provide vast improvements in tennis elbow. These treatments have gained favor in the last few years due to their effectiveness. Regimens of massage therapy and acupuncture work on small areas contributing to the condition. They can make significant strides in pain reduction and promote the body’s restorative healing process.
Another remedy that offers strong benefits to treating tennis elbow includes sports medicine chiropractic care. A sports medicine chiropractor assesses the condition, then lays out a plan to promote healing.
Treatment often includes working to align the bones. A chiropractor also treats the surrounding joints so they function at maximum capacity. They can “take up the slack” of the injured area while it heals. Chiropractic care serves a dual purpose of treating the condition directly. It heals the areas around the injury so that the body continues to strengthen and renew.
In a very small number of cases, the only remedy for tennis elbow is surgery. This is considered the last straw, once all other forms of treatment have been exhausted.
The best way to treat tennis elbow is to avoid it in the first place. Be sure to stretch before exercising. Consistently perform strengthening exercises. Employ correct techniques and proper equipment during physical activity. And, don’t overexert your arms (this goes for your entire body, by the way) during physical activity.
If you are diagnosed with lateral epicondylitis, it’s essential to understand the variety of treatment options available. The best course is often a blend of more than one remedy. Chiropractic care should be part of your healing process. It helps decrease pain, reduce healing time, and offers a non-medicinal approach to treating the body as a whole.
If you think you are suffering from tennis elbow give us a call and schedule an appointment with one of our Fargo chiropractors. We are here to help guide you on the path to finally feel good