What are the Best Ways to Cope with Tennis Elbow Pain?

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  • Written By: Dan Cavallari
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 05 October 2019
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The most important way to cope with tennis elbow pain is to find the root cause of the pain and alter that behavior to avoid aggravating the injury. Once the behavior that causes the pain has been determined, a sufferer will want to consider treatment options that will reduce or eliminate tennis elbow pain altogether. This often involves a trip to a doctor who can help determine the best course of action for treating the injury. Treatments range from resting the affected arm to undergoing surgery to repair damaged tendons or other tissues in the elbow.

Surgery is generally not necessary to treat tennis elbow pain, though a small percentage of tennis elbow pain sufferers will need a surgical intervention to repair damage to the elbow that is causing chronic or severe pain. In most cases, more conservative treatments are sufficient to rid the sufferer of tennis elbow pain, though the recovery can take a significant amount of time and it will require the person suffering from pain to refrain from certain activities likely to exacerbate the pain or cause further damage. Rest is perhaps the best and most important treatment of tennis elbow pain, and most people find themselves rid of the pain after several days or weeks of resting the elbow.


Anti-inflammatory medications and painkillers are also often used to treat tennis elbow pain. These medications will be prescribed by a doctor, though over the counter medications can be used as well for limited effect. Such medications should only be taken according to the doctor's instructions to reduce the risk of adverse side effects from the drugs. If pain persists after the prescription has ended, a follow-up visit to the doctor will be necessary and more aggressive treatment may be recommended.

Physical therapy is almost always recommended to help treat tennis elbow pain, and the person suffering from the pain should be sure to perform physical therapy exercises while being observed by professionals who can ensure the exercise is being done correctly. Exercising incorrectly can worsen the pain and further injure the elbow. If the pain was the result of a specific sport or physical activity, the person suffering from tennis elbow will need to cease participating in that activity for a period of time. Once the person resumes the activity, he or she will need to alter the manner in which the arm moves during the activity to prevent a flare-up of the pain in the future.



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