Tendonitis (also written tendinitis) occurs in an area where a tendon, which is a fibrous band, connects a bone with a muscle. The tendon becomes inflamed and irritated, causing pain. Due to the inflammation, tendonitis affects range of motion in that it causes pain when that part of the body is extended. An elbow tendonitis brace or elbow compression sleeve can be used both in the prevention of and the management of tendonitis and arm pain.
Causes of Tendonitis
Variations of tendonitis might also be referred to as tennis or golfer’s elbow, quarterback’s / pitcher’s / swimmer’s shoulder, or jumper's knee – all different joints and tendons, but the same issue. Certain professions (such as carpenters, painters, welders), players of certain sports (such as tennis, baseball, basketball), and those in their 30-40’s and older are more likely to develop tendonitis.
The causes of tendonitis may include:
- Repetitive movements (pitching a ball, swinging a tennis racket or golf club, skiing, raking, hammering, shoveling)
- Excessive stretching before exercise (stretching after is more recommended)
- Rapid movements
- Incorrect posture while doing an activity
- Not gradually building up to doing an activity
- Not limiting the number of repetitions or the force one exerts in activities one is not used to doing on a regular basis
- Increasing the amount of weightlifting too quickly
- Improper techniques or improper use of equipment
- People with diabetes also have an unexplained higher risk for developing tendonitis
Wearing an elbow sleeve will increase circulation, prevent micro tears, and stabilize the muscle from experiencing stress from impact and vibrations during activities. If you have experienced any of the following symptoms, you likely could benefit from wearing an elbow sleeve.
Symptoms of Tendonitis
- Pain, which may include:
- Dull ache when resting
- Sharp pain when moving
- Inflammation (which may include redness/swelling)
The usual regimen for relieving the symptoms of tendonitis include a mixture of rest, ice, compression, and elevation.
- Apply ice for 15 to 20 minutes. Do this every 4-6 hours for the first 3 days after initially experiencing pain associated with tendonitis.
- “Dense soft tissue,” which is made up of tendons, ligaments, cartilage, and some muscles, naturally has less direct access to blood flow. To increase the blood flow, one can begin to wear an elbow sleeve on an elbow affected by tendonitis; the compression sleeve will allow oxygen and nutrient rich blood to more quickly and efficiently reach the area and therefore speed up the healing process. This should optimally be started as soon as the majority of the swelling has subsided and can be continued not only as the injury heals, but also when and if the activity is resumed to prevent further injury.
- As the elbow sleeve stabilizes the area, it will also aid in resting the affected joint; do not resume the activity that initially caused the pain until you are completely healed / pain-free with normal range of movement.
- When possible, perhaps while or immediately after icing, elevate your affected arm above your heart resting on a pillow or something similar.
If you have mild tendonitis, the use of such a regimen may be sufficient without the need to see a physician. In particular, compression can be effective in recovery as it stabilizes the area – preventing further damage, and increases the blood flow to the affected joint and surrounding area. If the tendonitis symptoms persist after for more than a couple of weeks, a doctor’s care should be sought out to ensure the issue is not a ruptured tendon needing more advanced care.
The use of compression sleeves during workouts or physical and sports activity can also prevent tendonitis from occurring in the first place. Not only does compression increase blood flow during activities, it also works to eliminate lactic acid that is produced as muscles are in use, which helps recovery in general to involve less pain.