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Tennis, Anyone?

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Chiropractic Care and Injury Prevention

Some exercise- and sport-related injuries are random. Stuff happens. But most exercise- and sport-related injuries are preventable. If you're a beginner, making sure you don't do too much too soon is a major principle in injury prevention. If you're an intermediate, intermediate-advanced, or advanced exerciser or athlete, not suddenly doing way more than you're used to is another major injury prevention principle. For example, if your training runs are from 3 to 4 miles, and you've never run more than a 4-mile road race, then running a half-marathon (without additional extensive preparation) is usually a very bad idea.

Again, stuff happens, and common sense is the best method of injury prevention. Regular chiropractic care assists your overall exercise program by helping make sure that your musculoskeletal system is operating at peak efficiency. When your bones, joints, muscles, and other musculoskeletal tissues are working in harmony, the likelihood of experiencing an injury is reduced. For people who exercise and/or do sports, regular chiropractic care helps to get the most benefit out of any exercise time.

Repetitive stress injuries are typically very difficult to treat successfully. These injuries are the result of actions done repeatedly, frequently, and consistently over time. They've taken a long time to build up and, therefore, the healing process also requires a fair amount of time. Shin splints, iliotibial band syndrome, and rotator cuff syndrome are examples of common repetitive stress injuries. These problems are also known as overuse injuries. Tennis elbow is another common injury that is likely caused by repetitive stress.

Tennis elbow usually involves pain on the outer bony surface of the elbow joint (the lateral epicondyle). A variant involves pain on the inner surface of the elbow (the medial epicondyle). Regardless, tennis elbow pain interferes with many activities, not only those involving tennis and golf. Even the simple act of firmly twisting the lid on a difficult-to-open jar can cause significant pain. Driving for more than 30 minutes and prolonged keyboard activity are other examples of activities that may become quite troublesome when one is hampered by tennis elbow. Treatment usually involves rest, anti-inflammatory medications, and even injections of steroid compounds.1,2 But such treatments tend not to provide more than short-term relief. Ultimately tennis elbow may be frustrating and disheartening, as there doesn't appear to be an effective solution.

More useful treatment for repetitive stress injuries involves directly addressing the source of the problem. In the case of tennis elbow, mechanical issues in the forearm itself need to be corrected. For those whose painful elbows are in fact caused primarily by tennis or golf, focusing on sound technique will often help to provide significant relief. For example, in both sports, if lines of force generated by the arm muscles and lines of force generated by the forearm muscles cross at the elbow, significant pain is likely to develop over time. Learning how to generate parallel lines of force will help solve the problem, and such a solution may require the services of a coach.

For the rest of us, there are additional specific solutions. First, trigger points in the major forearm muscle bundles need to be treated.3 Trigger points in themselves may be very painful, and a trigger point also causes chronic fatigue in the muscle of which it is a part. When you try to use such a pre-fatigued muscle, damage to the muscle fibers and the tendon may result. Over time the involved region, such as the elbow, becomes chronically painful. Manual trigger point treatment relaxes chronic spasm and helps restore normal muscle tone. Increased blood flows to the muscle belly, and the involved muscle fibers have an opportunity to regain their normal length and to heal. The second specific solution is to use a narrow (1.5-inch thick), nonelastic elbow brace placed approximately 1 inch below the elbow. The brace will shorten the contractile length of the major forearm muscles, allowing them to achieve relative rest. The combination of trigger point therapy and appropriate use of a specific elbow brace will help to achieve long-term resolution of painful, difficult-to-treat tennis elbows.

1Childress MA, Buelter A: Management of chronic tendon injuries. Am Fam Physician 87(7):486-490, 2013

2Coombes BK, et al: Efficacy and safety of corticosteroid injections and other injections for management of tendinopathy: a systematic review of randomised controlled trials. Lancet 376(9754):1751-1767, 2010

3Ajimsha MS, et al: Effectiveness of myofascial release in the management of lateral epicondylitis in computer professionals. Arch Phys Med Rehabil 93(4):604-609, 2012

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Testimonial

I slipped on ice in December, landing hard on my behind. I was in excruciating pain and could barely move. It was a Saturday night but I called the office and left a message (new patient, too, found them on Google.) I received a call back first thing Monday morning, they got me right in that day, and I just completed my 3- month treatment plan. I feel so much better and am happy to have found Dr. Ide and his staff.

    ~Amy Hawker
     Fenton, MI

Dr. Ide and his staff are awesome. I had all but given up and I saw his ad. I am s happy to be out of partial pain and I have only gone twice, I cannot wait for the end results. Just to be pain free. Dr. Ide, I thank you so much.

    ~Patsy Dimond-Spencer
     Fenton, MI

Dr. Ide and his staff have given me my life back. The day I called to make my first appointment I had been suffering from a migraine and severe neck pain for 6 days. This was also after receiving multiple pain injections from my primary physician with no relief. His staff not only verified my insurance was accepted at this location before even offering me an appointment time (which multiple offices will not do this) over the phone but I was able to make an appointment for the same day. Dr. Ide took the time to obtain pertinent patient history and not only explain but he also showed me on my x-rays why I was experiencing pain. He addressed the root of the problem instead of pushing prescriptions to subside your symptoms. HE discussed my POA in detail and reiterated why finishing therapy and continuing home therapy was important. I was hesitant and nervous about my first adjustment but again, he took the time to walk me through each step. Paired with my weekly adjustments I also receive massage therapy. Monica, the massage therapist is incredible. She takes the time to ask specific questions before the massage to ensure she provides the best care possible. Kasey, Dr. Ide's assistant is extremely personable and continues to make sure you feel comfortable throughout your visit. The front staff also provides a warm and welcoming environment. Within my first month of treatment, I'm able to go das without a headache now and I have reduced the frequency of my pain medication. I highly recommend Dr. Ide and his staff!

    ~Leah Craig
     Fenton, MI

Very friendly staff and knowledgeable doctor! After doing a 3 month program, I no longer have daily headaches, back pain or neck pain. Most doctor's adjust your back and send you on your way - Dr. Ide makes sure to turn it into a lifestyle change by improving your posture and fixing any issues you may have. I would definitely recommend him over any chiropractor.

    ~Lauren Dunigan
     Fenton, MI

I always have good service and leave feeling good! The people are nice and all know my name. I really like how they do business for senior citizens... that's a big plus!

    ~Nancy Matson
     Fenton, MI

Very extensive in the examination. Not like other chiropractors I'd seen who just do a quick adjustment. They diagnosed the problem and are working to correct it with me. They have even went so far as to work out payment arguments for the things my insurance wouldn't cover.

    ~Brandon Ogle
     Fenton, MI

I had neck and shoulder pain since 2010. Ever since I started going to him I have felt better and better!

    ~Andrel Jacobs
     Fenton, MI

I had ankle problems all my life in my left foot. Dr. Ide adjusted my ankle for me and within one adjustment my ankle felt the best ever. Thanks Dr. Ide!

    ~A.H.
     Fenton, MI

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