Tennis Elbow Pain

Tennis elbow, also known by it’s medical name, lateral epicondylitis, is the result of microscopic tears in the muscles and tendons that run along the outside of your arm. If these soft tissues are used repeatedly, such as working at a computer or doing household tasks, micro-tearing and inflammation can occur which then leads to a sore and painful elbow.

Common treatment for tennis elbow is rest and anti-inflammatory medication, however this usually doesn’t fix the problem but will simply masks it until one resumes the activities they were doing before.

Chiropractic can offer many viable solutions for tennis elbow pain that not only help reduce the pain and inflammation but also correct the problem. Different therapies such as ultrasound, electrical stimulation and acupuncture can help reduce inflammation and promote proper soft tissue healing.

However, many times the root of the problem lies in the elbow joint itself. When it is not functioning properly, and is used repetitively, this places stress on all these soft tissue structures surrounding the elbow. Many times a gentle adjustment to the bones that make up the elbow joint can be the ‘magic bullet’ which gets the elbow working correctly and thus fixes the problem.

Additionally, I like to inform patients of some preventive measures that help with tennis elbow. Firstly, stay well hydrated. Over 50% of our body is made up of water and so it’s important that we stay hydrated. Proper hydration helps keep the soft tissues of the body supple and flexible. Amounts to consume vary widely based on many factors including body size, activity levels, and even the food we eat.

A good general rule of thumb for an average sized adult who works in an office setting is a minimum of 8 cups a day. Secondly, I am a big advocate of stretching. Stretching the muscles, tendons and ligaments of the elbow (and the entire body for that matter) will help it withstand the rigors brought on by repetitive usage.