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Photo for blog article titled They say you can't lick your elbow, but don't worry, we've got your back... and your elbow!

They say you can't lick your elbow, but don't worry, we've got your back... and your elbow!

Elbow pain is a condition that spans beyond the realm of professional athletes or weekend warriors on the golf course or tennis courts. It's a common complaint among individuals engaging in repetitive arm and wrist movements, which can lead to discomfort on either side of the elbow, accompanied by symptoms like weakened grip strength, and sensations of numbness and tingling.

Medial epicondylitis is not just for golfers

One of the more specific conditions we see at Health Within Osteopathy is medial epicondylitis, commonly referred to as golfer’s elbow. This condition arises from the chronic strain or overuse of the muscle tendons responsible for rotating the forearm and flexing the wrist, leading to pain around the inside of the elbow. It’s a scenario familiar to those involved in repetitive tasks such as typing, painting, and various manual professions, where prolonged activity places undue stress on the forearm's flexor tendons.

The journey of elbow pain

The path to persistent elbow pain often begins with micro-trauma to these tendons, progressing through stages from peritendinous inflammation to more severe tendon degeneration, including angiofibroblastic hyperplasia, and eventually leading to fibrosis or calcification. Without intervention, what starts as a manageable ache can evolve into a complex condition requiring much longer to resolve.

A holistic approach

The key to effectively treating elbow pain lies in not just addressing the symptom but understanding and treating the underlying cause. Osteopathy offers a holistic approach to recovery, aiming to restore not only the affected elbow but also to improve the overall functionality of related areas such as the neck, back, shoulders, and wrists.

Our treatment at Health Within Osteopathy focuses on releasing overworked muscles and tendons in the forearm and employing manual therapy techniques to enhance blood supply, promote lymphatic drainage, and encourage the healing of tissues. We prioritise techniques that help restore range of motion and prevent future recurrences of the condition.

Beyond manual therapy

Healing from elbow pain is a journey that extends beyond our clinic. We guide our patients on how to manage their condition at home, advising on the avoidance of aggravating activities, the use of ice, kinesiology tape or elbow braces, and night splints, and providing specific exercises. These include eccentric stretches and isometric and concentric wrist flexions designed to strengthen the forearm muscles, increase tendon resilience, and ensure a more durable recovery.

The importance of early intervention

Elbow pain, particularly conditions like golfer's elbow, can become significantly more challenging to treat if left unaddressed for an extended period. Early osteopathic intervention is crucial to prevent the condition from becoming severe and intractable. If you're experiencing elbow discomfort, it's important to seek help before the pain impedes your daily activities.

At Health Within Osteopathy, we're committed to helping you navigate your recovery with care, expertise, and a comprehensive understanding of how interconnected our bodily functions truly are. Don't let elbow pain hold you back — reach out to us, and let's work together towards your health and well-being.

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