Tennis elbow is a medical condition in which the patient suffers from pain in elbow, arm and sometimes wrist. This is caused due to swelling in the tendons. Although the name might suggest otherwise one can suffer from this condition even if they have never played tennis in their life.
Mostly the people who develop this condition are those whose work involves the repetitive movement of their fingers, wrist, and arm rigorously. Sportsmen such as tennis players, squash players, weight lifters can easily develop this as their profession/hobby involves repetitive swinging and holding movements of their wrists and arms but sportsmen are not the only ones to suffer from this pain. Many other people whose work or hobby involve constant use of these muscles are also prone to this painful condition e.g. painters, carpenters, computer users, etc.
Tennis elbow is a health issue that develops over time. It is mostly caused by repetitive motions like swinging a bat or tennis. The repetitive motions that put constant strain on the muscles and tendons can cause tennis elbow. You are likely to suffer from the condition if you constantly play sports like squash, tennis, fencing, racquetball and weight lifting.
People involved in hobbies and jobs like typing, raking, painting, carpentry, knitting, and raking are also likely to suffer from it. These are the jobs that involve repetitive motions that are harmful to the muscles and tendons.
You can avoid tennis elbow by avoiding overuse. If you feel that a certain activity is causing strain on your muscles and tendons then you need to stop doing it. Using the wrong equipment can also cause tennis elbow. Before you decide to play any sports it is important that you warm up so that the muscles are not stiff. After exercising you need to treat the muscle properly and the best way to do is to put ice on the elbow.
The symptoms of tennis elbow are usually feeling pain and tenderness near the elbow which might extend to the arm and hand sometimes. If holding something causes a sudden pain in the elbow or even the hand, the person might possibly be suffering from tennis elbow.
Treatments of Tennis Elbow:
- Giving rest to the affected arm and not performing activities which might have caused tennis elbow until it stops hurting. The continuous gripping and twisting movement of hand, wrist, and arm can cause the tendons to swell which causes tennis elbow. Therefore, relaxing the arm not only to relieve the pain but also to give muscles enough time to relax and come back to their natural healthy state will help cure this condition.
- Wearing elbow sleeves can also help in relieving pain. They not only relax the muscles and reduce the pain but also help in fast recovery. Elbow sleeve also helps to protect the affected area from further strain and the right amount of pressure and heat help in healing.
- One can also take mild painkillers that are easily available in an oral form such as ibuprofen, paracetamol, etc. in order to help treat pain. If the condition is not too severe, the use of painkillers along with rest can help in fast recovery.
- Topical formulations of the above-mentioned painkillers and other soothing creams can also be applied to the affected area. The application helps with inflammation and pain. These are available in different forms such as gels, sprays, creams etc. When they are applied to the affected area, they get absorbed into the skin and directly penetrate through the damaged muscle and help relieve the pain faster.
- Use of ice pack over the affected area can also help as rubbing ice is known to calm the muscles and reduce swelling.
- Injections also help in instant relief to the affected area. Steroid injections can be injected in order to get instant relief but this must be done with the advice of a doctor and strictly under his supervision as the wrong amount or application can cause further complications.
- If the pain is persistent and unbearable, the physiotherapist should be consulted so that he can examine and undermine the cause of the pain and advice treatment accordingly. Mostly, physiotherapists prescribe topical Tennis Elbow Treatment UK and follow customized exercises which help rehabilitate tennis elbow. The UK has some of the most credible physiotherapists using modern technology and techniques to cure conditions like tennis elbow.
- In some severe cases, surgery may also be needed if no other method works and the pain is persistent. In surgery, the damaged part can be repaired or removed in order to treat the condition. However, it is very rare and is only done as a last resort solution.
Tennis elbow is a treatable condition. The good news is that the condition is likely to heal on its own. When you start to see symptoms of the condition you need to take action and the simplest cure is to give the elbow rest. The rest is effective in speeding up the healing process.
If the rest does not help then there are other treatment methods that are effective. Here are a few treatment options that can help in getting rid of the pain.
Ice the elbow:
If the pain and swelling escalate then an effective way of treating is to put some ice on the elbow. Keep the ice on the swelled area for twenty to thirty minutes after every three to four hours. Ice the elbow for two to three days. If you still feel the pain then you should keep using ice until the pain goes away.
An elbow strap:
To stop the condition from escalating you should start using an elbow strap. It will provide support to the elbow and decrease the strain on the tendon.
If the pain and swelling keep on increasing then you should try medication. There are anti-inflammatory medicines like naproxen, aspirin, and ibuprofen that can help in dealing with the problem. But remember that drugs have side effects so make sure you consult a doctor before taking any medicines.