Tennis is a great sport for staying fit and keeping your mind sharp. However, the extensive amount of wrist and elbow use it requires can lead to injury, with tennis elbow being the most recognizable. Our physical therapists at Physical Therapy of Andalusia in Covington County, AL, advise that it’s important to understand this injury. By knowing its symptoms, causes, and treatment options, you’ll be able to avoid repeat incidents or worsening the situation.
What Is Tennis Elbow?
Tennis elbow—lateral epicondylitis—occurs when the tendons in your elbow are overworked from the swinging motions tennis requires. Continuous motion can lead to small tears in the muscle and tendons attached to the elbow. It can cause inflammation and pain that can resonate throughout your forearm and wrist. Backhand swings, poor grip, and improper technique are the most common tennis-related causes, though the condition isn’t exclusive to the sport.
Symptoms can vary from patient to patient, but the most common are pain on the outside of the elbow and possibly down the forearm, difficulty gripping, and muscle weakness. It’s important to see physical therapists right away, as this can develop into chronic pain when unaddressed.
Physical therapy is highly effective for treating tennis elbow. Carefully stretching and strengthening the muscles around the forearm and elbow will reduce the possibility of repeat incidents, as well as help the area heal. You should also speak with a tennis expert to improve your technique. In more extreme cases, physical therapists may recommend surgery or BOTOX® injections to resolve the issue. What’s most important is that you rest the area and avoid playing tennis until you’re fully healed.
If you’re dealing with tennis elbow or other athletic injuries, turn to our physical therapists at Physical Therapy of Andalusia. Our staff has over 32 years of experience and specializes in both pain management and recovery. We’re committed to helping our clients return to their favorite sports, jobs, and other activities, and will build a custom treatment plan to achieve the best results. Call (334) 222-5785 today to schedule an appointment and visit our website and Facebook to learn more.