What Moms Should Know About Tendonitis

Brought to you by Vive Health 

As a mother, you are not new to joint aches and discomforts
brought about by multitasking and juggling parenting, a job, and household
chores every single day. However, if the pain is already persistent, you might
need to take a closer look for it can already be an indication of tendonitis.
The word tendonitis, or tendinitis, gets thrown around frequently,
but very few understand what it really is. Tendonitis refers to the
inflammation of a tendon usually caused by repetitive motions and overuse. The
tendons are connective tissues that attach muscles to the bones. Note,
tendons and ligaments are two different kinds of connective tissues. A ligament
connects bones together at a joint while a tendon connects muscles to a bone.
Typically,
these tissues are tough, flexible, and fibrous, and naturally designed to
withstand tension.
The main function of the tendons is to work together with muscles
to exert a pulling force. However, overuse, overload, and overexertion can take
a toll on the tendons, thereby causing microtrauma and inflammation. Overuse
refers to body movements that are repeated often while overload refers to an
all too quick increase in the level of a particular activity. Overexertion, as the
term suggests, is exerting the tendons to more than they can physically bear.

Types of Tendonitis

Elbow tendonitis

Also known as tennis elbow, this condition is characterized by
pain shooting from the outer side of the elbow down through the wrist.
Scientifically, it goes by the name lateral epicondylitis, which generally refers to
the degeneration of the tendons’ attachment to both bone and muscle. It’s also
known as tennis elbow because it’s a common condition among tennis players.

Achilles tendonitis

This type of tendonitis directly affects the Achilles tendon,
which is touted as the largest tendon in the body. The Achilles
tendon connects your calf muscle to your heel bone, helping you perform various
day-to-day functions like walking, running, jumping, standing up on your toes,
and climbing the stairs. Hence, you can just imagine how prone it is to overuse
and potential degeneration.
Achilles tendonitis is often confused with plantar fasciitis, a
condition characterized by inflammation and pain in the plantar fascia ligament
in the foot (because both of them include heel pain).

Wrist Tendonitis

This condition is also known as De Quervain Syndrome and,
traditionally, as the ‘washer woman’s syndrome’ because it is most common
among people who do repetitive wrist motions like wringing wet clothes. It is
more of a degenerative condition that involves inflammation since it’s borne
out of repetitive strain or friction on the tendon.

Shoulder Tendonitis

Also known as a pitcher’s shoulder, this refers to the inflammation
of the tendons in your biceps or rotator cuff. The symptoms of this particular
tendonitis manifest over time. Any activity that keeps your shoulder in one
position for long periods or requires constant lifting of your arms overhead
can cause this condition.

Symptoms of Tendonitis to Watch out for

It’s important that you detect the signs of tendonitis early on in
order to get help right away. The symptoms will likewise tell you whether you
can still treat and manage the injury at home or it’s already time to consult
your doctor.
Here are a few signs to watch out for:
  • Painless but restricted movements
  • Pain is unbearable during the night
    and the morning
  • Pain aggravated by movement
  • Pain accompanied by swelling and
    stiffness

Prevention and Management

They say that prevention is better than a cure and in the case of
tendonitis, that age-old adage can never be truer. The treatment and management
of tendonitis are geared towards relieving pain and minimizing inflammation.
  • As much as possible, avoid activities
    that require you to lift your hand over your head. In the same vein, try
    not to sleep on your shoulder every night.
  • To manage Achilles tendonitis, you
    can wear a sleeping boot to immobilize your foot
    such as a night splint. This method also works in treating plantar
    fasciitis pain.
  • Take breaks from your tasks, like
    typing, for instance, or other tasks requiring repetitive motion such as
    pulling weeds.
  • Avoid wearing high heels for this
    can shorten your Achilles tendon. If your work requires it, remove your
    high heels from time to time and do some foot stretching techniques to
    relax your feet.
  • To manage pain and swelling, apply
    an ice pack to the affected area and wrap it with an elastic bandage. You
    may also take over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen.
  • Perform exercise programs
    specifically designed to improve the strength and flexibility of your
    tendons.

It’s vital that you give the affected area a much-needed rest. You
might also need to change your routines. As a mom, taking care of your family
must include practicing your own self-care.

Amber Louchart

Amber is the proud Homeschooling mother to four beautiful children, Damian (22), Rosaleigh (9), Carlyn (6), Naomi (3) and a wife to her loving husband, Chancellor. Her family includes three cats and provides a safe, loving home for foster cats through Paws for Life Rescue. She loves being a stay-at-home mom and feels blessed to be able to care for her children full-time and provide them with so many opportunities through Metro Detroit Mommy.

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