Taking Care of Your Elbows, Life hacks to prevent Elbow Pain!
Physical fitness nowadays has become something that most people are involved in, some people have developed routines that prepare them for the challenges they encounter, and it makes them feel like they are capable of tackling pretty much anything. The rest however are a little less active, they find that they are more challenged by physical aspect of things that may need to be done. Though people may live different lifestyles one thing makes everyone feel as vulnerable as everyone else. Pain. A distressing feeling cause by injury. Pain is one of the things that sets us as equals and may proverbially “bring us back to earth”, specially pain from physical injuries.
We all have different daily activities and some of us may find that pain is something that we experience commonly to a certain degree. For example, joint pains. A surging sharp feeling when stretching or bending your joints isn’t something that everyone can ignore. In fact it shouldn’t be. More specifically elbow pain, may be more alarming than we may think. Think of all the things we do that require the use of our arms, from writing, eating, lifting, even turning a doorknob! These are daily activities that we do that involve the use of our elbows.
Taking this into consideration our elbows are one of the most used joints in our body as daily activities mostly require the use of our arms and our elbows are the joints that facilitates these arm movements and help sustain the weight of carried objects. This is the reason why elbow pain is probably the most common type of joint pain that is treated by physical therapists all around the world. Lucky for us, elbow pain can be averted by thinking back on what we have been doing allowing us to take precautionary and curative actions.
Where and why does it hurt?
Lateral Epicondylitis commonly referred to as tennis elbow is one of the most common elbow joint ailments. With this condition you may feel tenderness on the outside of your elbow. Tennis elbow is named for the repetitive use of the joint while gripping objects such as a tennis racket. As repetitive stress and strain damages the tendons in the joint, this condition is not limited to people who engage in the sport and is actually a result of over usage of the joint while maintaining a firm grip. Medial epicondylitis also known as golfer’s Elbow the other hand, is a similar condition but the pain is felt on the inside of the elbow joint. As earlier this condition is also caused by repetitive stress on the joint while gripping objects.
Although these conditions are named after sports, as mentioned above, they are not limited to athletes who engaged in the activities used to name these conditions. These ailments stem from a long time of repeated stress affecting the elbow. Repetitive physical activity such as heavy lifting. While it may be difficult to pinpoint the cause other activities that require gripping may also be taken into consideration such as gripping the steering wheel for an extended period of time along with how you may have been leaning on your elbows a lot at work on your desk or in other situations.
What should I do about it?
Typically joint paints are self-curing and would just go away after time. Some home remedies would include ice compresses, rehydration, rest, elevation, and compression. Ice helps reduce the pain and the swelling if any as it causes numbness on the affected nerves and soothes the inflammation. Compression and elevation help the circulation in the affected areas which also reduce and prevent inflammation. These remedies may be used for any type of joint pain and over time have proven to be effective. For chronic reoccurring pain for long periods of time, hot compresses or heat have also been used to soothe the pain as it ensures good circulation bringing recuperative nutrients to the affected area. Stretching can also be done to loosen up muscles as long as it does not cause more pain as additional stress on affected areas due to stretching may cause more harm than good.
Protect your injury.
Prevent additional damage by using equipment such as braces or sleeves. Braces prevent additional stress on the affected areas by holding them in place allowing your muscles to recover unhindered. Always make sure that they are fastened and secured without blocking off circulation. If the pain is on the elbow and the forearm a wrist brace will allow your elbow to rest and recover. Compression sleeves are also suggested to prevent inflammation and improve circulation.
If symptoms persist consult your doctor.
Although home remedies may seem more convenient and in times effective, always consider seeking for professional help to make sure that you are on the right track. Remember that if home remedies do not cure the pain, the damage may already be extensive or maybe caused by something else. Seeking professional advice would allow you to know what exactly is causing the pain and a prescription if needed may be provided to help you through it.