Tennis elbow is a condition that causes pain and tenderness on the outside of the elbow. The pain can be mild and only cause some pain on gripping activities, or it can be very severe, and constant enough to disrupt sleep at night.
Most people we see with this aren't actually tennis players! It's caused usually by too much gripping and twisting of your wrist, such as using a paintbrush, or the garden shears. It can also be caused by gripping the mouse of the computer too much, or in an awkward position. The condition is caused by a problem with the tendon that joins your forearm muscles onto the outside of your elbow; it's called the common extensor tendon. The tendon can become very irritated, and if it remains irritated for some time it can begin to break down and weaken.
Modifying activities in the short term can help the tendon settle down. Taping techniques, soft tissue release techniques and acupuncture can all help the process of it settling. Specific strengthening exercises to help rebuild the tendon are usually necessary, especially if the elbow has been sore for some time. Completing a rehab programme for the elbow can help prevent the problem returning.
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