If you are experiencing pain in your outer elbow, you may have tennis elbow. This condition is also known as lateral epicondylitis, and it can be quite painful. In this blog post, we will discuss four signs that indicate that you may be suffering from tennis elbow as well as treatment and prevention tips.
Tennis elbow is pain in the outer elbow which may or may not be caused by playing tennis. Another name for tennis elbow is lateral epicondylitis, which literally means inflammation of the lateral epicondyle.
Here are four signs that indicate that you may be suffering from tennis elbow:
#1. You have pain or burning sensation on the bony area on the outer part of the elbow, i.e., the lateral epicondyle.
#2. Your pain radiates down to the forearm and maybe into the fingers. If the pain is long standing you may even feel it in the upper arm and cervical spine. Thus, your whole arm starts to get involved in the pain pattern. This happens because the same fascia connects the forearm and arm muscles. (Fascia is a sleeve that envelopes the muscles.)
#3. You experience pain making as fist, bending the wrist and fingers and rotation of the forearm. Example – pouring out water from a jug into a glass or turning a doorknob.
#4. You may find it painful to even lift light weights or items in your affected hand.
Watch the video below for some of the exercises that can be done to reduce or eliminate the pain originating from tennis elbow:
Six tips that can help to overcome the pain from tennis elbow are:
#1. Use a cold pack to ease the inflammation on the elbow and involved muscles.
#2. Take a break from the activities that trigger your pain or reduce their intensity till the pain eases off.
#3. Maintain a good posture if you spend considerable amount of time at the desk or use a computer. Try to keep your forearms fully supported. Keep your wrists in neutral by using a mousepad with wrist support or an ergonomic mouse. This keeps the elbow and wrist in neutral and thus prevents stress on these already inflamed areas.
#4. Use a tennis elbow brace to provide support to the affected muscles. The brace will help to stabilise the affected area, thereby reducing the pain and discomfort.
#5. Check your racquet if you play racquet sports. If the racquet is loosely-strung or very stiff it can create stress the forearm muscles. If your racquet handle is too thin you will have to grip it tightly. Both these situations will make the forearm muscles work harder, leading to more pain and inflammation.
#6. An adequate warm up pre and post-exercise using the stretches shown in the video can help reduce the build-up of inflammation in the elbow.
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