Tennis Elbow: Not Just for Tennis Players
So it’s called tennis elbow, but does it only happen to tennis players? Definitely not. The truth is, tennis elbow is nothing more than a colloquial name for a painful condition that is experienced by hundreds of thousands of people every year. And if you think you may be dealing with it yourself, you’ve come to the right place.
Medically speaking, tennis elbow is known by a more technical name: lateral epicondylitis. The condition is characterized by a pain or soreness in the outside part of the arm – right where the forearm meets the elbow. This pain is caused by small tears that develop in the forearm tendons after repetitive strain to the area, which can be a result of many kinds of activities.
Tennis elbow is fairly common among middle-aged adults, and yes, it can be caused by the motions and techniques of playing tennis. That fact aside, there are many other repetitive actions that cause strain on the forearm/elbow area and lead to development of lateral epicondylitis. Carpenters, contractors, athletes, musicians, cooks, and factory workers are all susceptible to the same kinds of risk for developing the condition, so don’t write it off simply because you don’t play tennis.
Symptoms of tennis elbow commonly include:
- Pain in the forearm outside the elbow
- Weakness of grip or pain when gripping
- Tenderness to the touch
- Chronic persistence of the above symptoms
If this is sounding more and more like the problem you’re experiencing, your best path to recovery is to seek evaluation from a doctor. Over-the-counter pain relievers may help reduce the symptoms, but they won’t make the tears in your tendons go away, so it is often best to seek help and establish a plan of treatment to prevent further aggravation of the condition.