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Chiropractic Care for Tennis Elbow

With the start of Wimbledon approaching, we thought we could give you something else to ponder over, rather than strawberries and cream! At Back in Shape, we believe chiropractic is for everyone from the young and old to the injured and the athletic. You don’t have to be in pain to receive our care. Andy Murray has his own chiropractor to help him stay in tip top shape! 

Chiropractors can not only get rid of pain but detect underlying issues before they become a problem. With sports, comes injuries and one that will probably jump to most people’s minds is Tennis Elbow. We are seeing tennis elbow more and more in the clinic, along with many other tendinopathies. We have successfully treated many patients with tennis elbow and find that people always wish they had sought our help sooner!

Tennis Elbow Myths:

  1. It’s caused by your racquet strings
  2. The only cure is rest
  3. You can only get it playing tennis

What is Tennis Elbow?

Tennis Elbow is a tendinopathy – also known as lateral epicondylitis that occurs when there is a breakdown of the tendon where it joins to the bone at the outside of the elbow. It is a common misconception that tennis elbow is always an inflammatory problem. In fact, recent studies have shown that there is little to no inflammation at the site of pain. In these cases, ice, anti-inflammatories and steroid injections may not help your symptoms long term. 

What Causes Tennis Elbow?

Whilst playing tennis definitely can cause tennis elbow, the most common causes are simply overusing your forearm due to a repetitive or strenuous activity, or even as a result of trauma. When treating tennis elbow. We often find restrictions at the elbow joint or a dysfunction in its movement. This in turn can lead to stress on the surrounding tendons; which can gradually lead to the injury. If you’re between 30-50 and work as a plumber, painter or carpenter,  you are more likely to suffer with tennis elbow. It is estimated that only around 5% of sufferers actually play tennis!

Symptoms and When to Seek Help! 

The pain associated with tennis elbow can be anything from a frequent, dull ache to a stronger pain radiating from the outside of your elbow into your forearm and wrist, especially when doing the following:

  • Shaking hands
  • Turning a doorknob
  • Holding a coffee cup
  • Opening jars

The pain can be more prevalent at night and people often wake with a stiff elbow. If your pain is not eased by over-the-counter medications, it is a good idea to seek professional help if symptoms haven’t improved after three weeks.

How can Chiropractic Help?

The chiropractor will examine and treat any area relating to the function of the elbow, wrist and shoulder as well as the muscles of the forearm. They will also look at your overall function, including your neck. Studies have shown that having dysfunction in your neck is likely to predispose you to have tennis elbow, especially if its on your non-dominant side. Using techniques such as soft tissue therapy, acupuncture, taping and low level laser therapy, we can help restore function at the elbow as well as break down scar tissue and promote healing of the tendon by increasing the circulation in that area.

How can I make sure it doesn’t come back?!

When your pain has improved, you will be given a bespoke rehabilitation plan of stretching and strengthening exercises to ensure it doesn’t re-occur! We also aim to fix the root cause of the problem, not just ease your symptoms. For example, by finding a more ergonomic way of doing your job or improving your racquet technique.

Think you have tennis elbow or another joint tendinopathy and want to find out more? Book in with one of our friendly practitioners today and start your journey to feeling good, moving well and living better. 

Elizabeth Garvey
    5 Wooler Park, North Way, Walworth Industrial Estate, Andover, Hampshire SP10 5AZ
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