Treating & Preventing Stress Injuries
Your daily routine may take its toll on your body. After so many hours and days of walking, bending, typing, lifting, or carrying out other everyday tasks, you may develop aches and pains that are not easily relieved with rest or over-the-counter pain medications. You can protect your health and avoid unnecessary discomfort and pain by learning about the most common stress injuries.
Tendinitis, as its name implies, is the irritation and swelling of a tendon in your body. Some of the most common types of tendinitis are found in athletes who participate in sports like:
- Baseball or softball
- Track and field
However, it can also affect anyone who repeatedly uses their arms, legs, and other joints to lift, twist, bend, and carry out other types of motions. This condition requires the complete rest of the affected tendon and may require more extensive treatment like cortisone injections or physical therapy.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
People who work in jobs that require the frequent and repeated use of their hands, wrists, and fingers are an at increased risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome. This condition has symptoms that range from stiffness and numbness in the fingers, wrists, and hands to intense and sharp pain in the middle parts of the lower arm.
Carpal tunnel syndrome gets its name from the narrowing of the carpal tunnel in the arms, which results in the nerves being pinched and damaged. Doctors can perform laser surgery to increase the opening of the carpal tunnel and relieve pain. People with less severe cases of carpal tunnel syndrome may find relief by wearing hand and wrist braces while they work.
Bursitis is a repetitive stress injury that stems from the inflammation of the bursa, or liquid-filled sac around one of your joints, bones, or muscles. This condition results from repeated stress of the area as well as minor to severe injuries. People are also at risk of bursitis as they get older and their muscles and bones weaken.
Doctors typically recommend that sufferers rest the affected areas and take pain relievers like ibuprofen until the swelling dissipates. People who suffer from bursitis more frequently may need cortisone injections or physical therapy to help strengthen their joints, bones, and muscles.
Avoiding Stress Injuries
Some types of stress injuries are almost impossible to avoid as you get older. However, you can still take preventative measures by getting enough exercise and by eating a healthy, balanced diet that includes plenty of protein, calcium, and iron.
You should also maintain a healthy weight and see your doctor regularly if you take medications that deprive your muscles, bones, ligaments, and tendons of nutrients and put them at an increased risk of damage. You may even need to wear orthopedic braces as needed to help stabilize vulnerable areas like your knees, wrists, or ankles.