Elbow pain can be debilitating and varied. A patient might not notice the pain until he or she is trying to pick something up or throw a piece of athletic equipment. Suddenly, the patient feels a sharp pain, soreness, or weakness in the elbow. If a patient is experiencing elbow pain, identifying the cause and getting it treated can prevent that pain from interfering with normal life and can prevent more serious problems down the road. Here are some of the top causes of elbow pain, general treatments for elbow pain, and chiropractic treatments for elbow pain. Any patient that reviews this information will gain a better understanding of how to deal with elbow pain, and how to take steps forward in finding relief.
Causes of Elbow Pain
One of the most common causes of elbow pain is cubital tunnel syndrome. Like carpal tunnel syndrome, which affects the wrist, cubital tunnel syndrome occurs in response to irritation of the ulnar nerve. This damage to the nerve can cause pain on the underside of the elbow, and may result in weakness or sharp pain when using the muscles or flexing the joint around this nerve. This can also happen to the radial nerve, just above the elbow. No matter where the irritation occurs, it can cause light, moderate, or even severe pain in a patient, resulting in the need for further treatment.
Other common causes of elbow pain include tendinitis, stress fractures, sprains, strains, trapped or irritated nerves, and conditions like “tennis elbow,” or “golfer’s elbow,” in which overuse of the elbow has caused a strain. Arthritis, however, is probably the second most common cause of elbow pain. Regardless of what is causing elbow pain, it is important for any patient to seek treatment.
Treatments of Elbow Pain
In some cases, the pain will simply go away over time. This is especially the case with strains, and nerve irritations may also go away on their own. In other cases, the pain will persist and get worse, making it difficult to use the elbows. Treatment for elbow pain will depend heavily on the cause of the pain, but some of the most common treatments include:
- Heat – A hot pack on the elbow and forearm can increase blood flow to the area
- Stretching – Stretching techniques can relieve pain and tension in the elbow
- Braces – Braces can support the elbow, particularly when engaged in activities like lifting, throwing, and hitting
- Medication – Medication can relieve the inflammation and pain in the elbow area
- Surgery – In some cases, surgery is require to free a trapped nerve or otherwise alleviate pain
Chiropractic Treatments of Elbow Pain
Chiropractic adjustments are a great way to mitigate and relieve elbow pain, especially if that pain is due to misaligned bones or joints. The elbow is a relatively complex joint, and can easily become misaligned. A chiropractor can realign the joint or guide you in performing stretches to reduce elbow pain.
For more information about treating elbow pain, contact Horst Chiropractic today. Our staff can schedule your appointment or answer any questions you may have.