Physical Therapy for Elbow Conditions
Elbow injuries are common conditions. Repetitive movement and constant use during certain types of activities may put excessive strain on the elbow tendons. Conditions such as tennis elbow may occur in tennis players or individuals who participate in certain athletic activities, but may also occur in people who have jobs that involve repetitive motions of the wrist and arm such as carpenters, or people in construction related trades.
Individuals with mild elbow conditions may benefit from physical therapy to minimize pain and restore movement. Physical therapy may help restore strength and movement and allow patients with elbow conditions to gradually resume their regular activities. Initial physical therapy treatments may include ice, electrical stimulation and massage, to help control pain and swelling. As the healing begins, exercises may be used to increase movement and mobility.
Therapeutic Methods for Treating Elbow Conditions
A physical therapist will guide the patient in exercises to gradually stretch and strengthen the muscles of the elbow and forearm. Physical therapy treatment may include:
- Muscle strengthening exercises
- Range of motion exercises
- Exercises for fine motor skills
- Hand dexterity exercises
- Gradual weight-bearing activities
Recommendations may also be made to help alleviate the stress to the injured muscles and avoid re-injury. Physical therapy treatments focus on helping the patient return to all usual activities. Adhering to the physical therapy program and the entire rehabilitation process are essential for achieving effective results.