Improving Your Posture

How Can A Chiropractor Rehabilitate Tennis Elbow?

If you are experiencing weak grip strength, forearm numbness, tingling, and pain in your elbow, you should visit your doctor to get checked out for tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis. Tennis elbow occurs when the elbow and forearm tendons develop microtears and inflammation from overuse. As the name implies, tennis elbow is often caused by racquet sports, but it can also be caused by any activity that causes repetitive motions in the arm and wrist, such as using power tools or utensils during cooking.

Rest and over-the-counter medications usually help tennis elbow resolve, but if you aren't seeing improvement in your symptoms, you may want to visit a chiropractor for some physical rehabilitation. Here are three chiropractic services that may help.

Arm Adjustments

You may have heard of chiropractic adjustments to the spine, but chiropractors also make adjust other areas of the body where there is dysfunction. For instance, bones of the arm—such as the humerus, ulna, and radius—may be slipping out of normal alignment and could be exacerbating your tennis elbow symptoms. Once your chiropractor corrects any subluxations, he or she can fit you with a brace that will support these corrections. Elbow braces place pressure further down the forearm and reduce pressure on the injured elbow tendon.

Strengthening Exercises

Gentle exercises are an important part of physical rehabilitation after inflammation subsides. Your chiropractor can show you how to correctly perform exercises that flex the wrist and supinate the arms. Your chiropractor can also teach you exercises that will reinforce proper technique if you play a sport. For instance, if you are relying too much on your forearm muscles for power instead of your legs or core, you risk re-injury. Your chiropractor can show you how to correctly engage other muscle groups so that there isn't increased tension or twisting in the elbow muscles and tendons.

Active Release Technique

Some people with tennis elbow may develop scar tissue. Scar tissue can limit flexibility and cause pain and stiffness in your elbow joint. Your chiropractor can use the active release technique (ART) to break up this scar tissue and improve circulation. One study found that ART could reduce pain and increase functional outcomes for people with lateral epicondylitis. ART can feel somewhat similar to massage therapy. During ART, the chiropractor maintains constant pressure on tender sites with scar tissue. While the chiropractor maintains contact, patients move their arm in different directions to help break up adhesions and improve their range of motion.

Reach out to a chiropractor today for more information on rehabilitation treatments for tennis elbow.