8 Tips for a Pain-Free Elbow
Quick Fixes for Strains or Sprains
You never knew how important your elbow was to life until you messed it up, right?
Elbows often don’t get the respect and care that they deserve as a joint upon which so much that we do hinges.
The bad news is that elbow injury can be a vicious cycle of re-injury and deterioration lasting years or even decades. A slightly bothersome elbow micro-injury can be exasperated and develop into a costly full-blown injury. Often the mainstream advice and approach to elbow injury make it worse, and often the conventional wisdom of resting and immobilizing the elbow is counter-intuitive.
When you complain about your elbow issues to your doctor they will not hesitate to prescribe you drugs, send you to physical therapy or book you for surgery but there are some low-hanging-fruit solutions that are well worth trying first. Whether your elbow is achy, strained, or sprained from pushing it a bit too hard in the gym, a bike crash, or a foolish attempt at breakdancing the following tips will give you pain relief and shortcut recovery from tennis elbow.
8 Tips for a Pain-Free Elbow - Quick Fixes for Strains or Sprains
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To Immobilize or Not to Immobilize
The typical response to elbow injury is to give it rest, take time off from playing tennis, training, or weight lifting, and immobilizing the elbow. This often doesn’t help much. Your elbow and tendons need a modicum of action and stimulation to heal. Using an elbow strap or brace is a low-tech measure used since time immemorial to alleviate ailing elbows. You can wrap your troubled elbow to pad the painful spot and stay active.
As a rule of thumb, if playing sports or continuing training is painful, take a break.
Next, a wuwu measure (that’s not actually wuwu) which world-class athletes and powerlifters swear by. There’s reason to believe that an acupuncture session could help, at least with the pain, unlike the mainstream approach to elbow injury there’s no downside to acupuncture and it’s quite affordable compared to surgery.
The Tennis Elbow guru and physical therapist, Allen Willette enthusiastically advocates self-administered manual therapy. Massage stimulates the tendons to heal, any massage is good, but there are two notable methods…
Youtube is your friend here, repeatedly watch the techniques demonstrated and spend a few minutes daily doing self-massage.
Let Inflammation Do Its Thing
The mainstream approach to elbow injury is attacking inflammation but this often misguided. Tendons need inflammation to heal, they need extra blood flow, this is why cryotherapy, cold therapy or icing your elbow may actually be counter-intuitive. For the same reason taking a bunch of anti-inflammatory supplements or herbs may not be best.
Avoid Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI)
Many of us now spend the majority of our days using computers and technology in very repetitive motions, this can result in classic carpal tunnel, nascent tendonitis, gamer’s wrist or even selfie elbow. Try to change things up…
- Move your mouse over to the other side of the computer and use your non-dominant hand.
- If you spend a lot of time writing, try using dictation software to give your hands a break from making thousands of keystrokes a day.
- Maybe pick up a habit that doesn’t involve so much damn clicking and swiping.
Stay AWAY from Steroids
Probably the most problematic way to address elbow injury is the injection of exogenous steroids. Cortisone shots, especially are bad news that are well demonstrated to cause weakened tendons in the long term.
Supplement the Building Blocks
Vitamin C, Vitamin D, clean fish oil and collagen supplements provide the molecular building blocks that your body needs to rebuild tissue and connective tissue for recovery.
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BPC-157 is a synthetic peptide derived from a naturally occurring protein in our stomach. It is a peptide chain that…
Around the internet, you’ll find BPC-157 sold as an injectable peptide. This involves using a needle and going through the tricky process of mixing the powdered peptides in bacteriostatic water very carefully to avoid compromising the very molecularly fragile peptides. When buying peptides online you also have to be warry about Chinese sourced peptides, which are sometimes not the real thing. Several clinical studies including one published in the Journal of Orthopaedic Research demonstrated that oral BPC-157 is likely equally effective as injection.
What athletes are saying about BPC-157…
“I went to my ortho after 2 weeks of severe rotator cuff tendinitis on both shoulders as well as a touch of tennis elbow and wrist tendonitis… Within 24 hours of the first injections, I started to feel an appreciable reduction in pain, but I still had a way to go. For that first week, day after day my pain level went down and my strength and my range of motion improved to the point now 8 days later where I am at 100% with zero pain and I actually now have better range of motion than I’ve had in both shoulders in the past decade.”
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“I’m a skeptical person when it comes to alternative meds and stuff. I train in boxing and had injured my knee. I didn’t want to quit training to let my knee heal so I tried BPC 157. Literally, in 3 days the pain was gone from the day I started taking it. This had been an ongoing injury and I had felt the pain for 3 weeks. BPC-157 healed it in 3 days.”
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