Any tennis enthusiast will tell you that not only does the sport give you an incredible workout, but it is a great way to relieve stress while offering a unique social aspect through clubs and leagues.
However, a very common injury occurs among tennis players. Pain caused by overuse of the hand, forearm, and arm muscles is also known as tennis elbow. Continuous motion can cause an abrupt or subtle injury to the muscles and tendons around the outside of the elbow. You’re most likely to experience tennis elbow in your dominant arm, but it can occur on either arm or even both at once.
Symptoms of Tennis Elbow
There are several symptoms for tennis elbow, including: increasing pain around the outside of the elbow, worsening pain when squeezing objects or shaking hands, or using the wrist with force such as opening a jar or brushing your teeth.
Diagnosing Tennis Elbow
Your doctor should be able to determine if you have tennis elbow based on the description of your pain and physically examining your arm. It is important that you see you see your doctor when you first begin experiencing the pain so that he or she can rule out other causes. They may take x-rays or order an MRI to also confirm the diagnosis.
Treating Tennis Elbow
Once your doctor has determined that you are suffering from tennis elbow, they may prescribe physical therapy, a forearm brace to help rest your tendons and even topical anti-inflammatories. In rare instances, surgery is recommended. These treatments will help reduce the inflammation and decrease stress to promote healing. The best thing to do is to mainly rest the arm and give it time to properly recover from the overuse.