Tips For Treating Or Preventing Tendonitis

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For sportsmen or someone who does manual labour, you’re probably familiar with the stiff sensation that occurs after an intense match or hard day’s work. This is natural. Not only because our muscles are being strained but also because of our ligaments and tendons. Now, let’s remember that our bodies can handle a lot, especially when we’re young. But they’re not indestructible and sooner or later, injuries and overuse can catch up with us. A common culprit in this regard is tendonitis.

In this article, we’ll cover tendonitis, how to avoid it, and how to treat it if you’re one of the unlucky ones who’ve developed it.

What is Tendonitis exactly?

Before we get into the nitty-gritty, it’s helpful to understand how tendonitis develops. Understanding this will help you avoid it and learn to treat it if or when it raises its head. Let’s first talk about tendons. Tendons are those thick, fibrous strands of tissue that connect your muscles to your bones. They’re pretty strong, and it takes a lot to damage them, but it’s not impossible.

Tendonitis develops from overuse in most cases. For instance, have you ever heard of tennis elbow? This is a form of tendonitis. Overuse causes tendons to become inflamed, causing pain and discomfort. Tendonitis doesn’t just happen to those who play sports, though. It can become a problem for any active individual.

What causes Tendonitis?

Picture this: take an elastic band and stretch it back and forth as many times as you can. Eventually, you’ll see that it no longer returns to the same shape. It’s lost some of its elasticity. This is exactly what happens with tendonitis. While our tendons aren’t as flexible as your standard rubber band, they do have a certain level of elasticity, and as we use them, they also perish over time. Causes can be endless, but the most common would be sport or overuse. Depending on the severity of the pain, a doctor might suggest you go for an X-ray scan to confirm if it’s tendonitis or not.

Tips For Treating Or Preventing Tendonitis

Sounds like we’re all destined to have tendonitis in our old age, but this isn’t always the case. There are some people in their 80s who are fit-as-a-fiddle still. It all comes down to how we manage our bodies when we’re young. Here are some tips for treating or preventing tendonitis:

Warm Up

Number one on our list is warm up before you do anything physical. Take an elastic when it’s cold and try to expand it rapidly. What happens? It cracks, right? Well, your tendons don’t exactly crack but you get the idea. Sudden sharp movements when your tendons are cold or still can lead to injuries that won’t be good. So warming up is always key!

Don’t push when it hurts

For some of us, the mind is indeed stronger than the body. But this isn’t always a good thing. We can sometimes push too hard and end up damaging our muscles. For this reason, stop when your joints start hurting. For example, some runners get intense pain in the Achilles tendons when running, so they should stop, stretch it out, and not push it.

Understand your limits

This point links in with the one above, but you have to know your limits. Our bodies can deal with a lot, but there’s no telling the long-term implications of pushing ourselves past the limit. Not to mention, if you’re training for something and pushing things a bit far, you might injure yourself and not reach the goal you’re training towards. So stick within your limits. A little progressive overload isn’t bad though, but don’t overdo it.

Take advantage of ergonomics

Exercise isn’t the only thing that can be an issue. Tight tendons can be just as risky. Individuals who do desk jobs and sit for a day will tell you that when they get up, they feel extremely still. This isn’t always good. We need to be flexible and able to move. That’s why getting an ergonomic desk, chair, or even a split keyboard would be super helpful.

Stretch Often

This one kind of links into warming up, but stretching daily is important for tendon health. We don’t mean stretching like a gymnast. Just simple stretches of five to ten minutes a day to keep your body loose and agile.

Try different activities

For those who do certain sports consistently, like road running or squash, you might want to consider giving them a break sometimes and trying out something softer on your joints. Swimming, for instance, is a good alternative.


Final Thoughts

Tendon pain is never a nice condition to live with. For those of you who currently live without tendonitis, look after your bodies well. For those who have it, try to follow some of these tips above daily, especially stretching, to help reduce its effects.