Always bear in mind that an inflamed elbow joint normally occurs as an injury to the joint itself or on the surrounding soft tissues including the tendons, ligaments and muscles. These injuries include bursitis, tennis elbow and tendinitis. The commonly used remedies for an inflamed elbow joint include the application of ice, anti-inflammatory drugs and compression in order to control the swelling. You can learn how to provide these measures effectively by enrolling in first aid training today. It is best to consult a doctor if the individual continues to suffer from persistent pain and swelling.
What are the causes?
Constant activities in sports such as golf and tennis can cause injuries to the elbows, resulting to swelling and pain. When the individual develops tennis elbow, it involves the inflammation of the soft tissues on the exterior part of the elbow. As for golfer’s elbow, it involves the swelling of the soft tissues on the interior part of the elbow.
In some cases, elbow tendinitis develops in which the tendons surrounding the elbow such as the biceps tendon swell and deteriorate. Additional causes of an inflamed elbow joint include bruises, fractures and bursitis as well as the inflammation of the bursa sac.
The initial measure to control the swelling is rest. The individual is encouraged to avoid any irritating and painful activities such as golf and tennis in order to reduce the swelling and prevent it from recurring. In case minor elbow movement instigates pain, it is best to wear a sling to reduce the pain and swelling. Always bear in mind that rest can help promote the healing process. The length of the rest period tends to vary depending on the type and severity of the injury.
Application of ice and compression
Both ice and compression are beneficial for an inflamed elbow joint, especially when combined with rest. You have to apply ice on the elbow since it promotes vasoconstriction, thus narrowing the blood vessels. This will help manage the inflammatory response of the body as well as minimize the swelling. The ice can be applied 3-4 times in a day for 20 minute intervals.
The compression can be applied by using an elastic wrap starting at the middle forearm up to upper arm. The elastic wrap should be wrapped for the entire day to push out the current swelling and prevent it from recurring.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen are usually taken orally in order to manage an inflamed elbow joint. These medications work by inhibiting certain chemicals released during the inflammatory response. Once these chemicals are blocked, the swelling is reduced. Just remember that anti-inflammatory drugs can cause stomach upset and must be taken along with food. If the individual is taking other medications such as for blood pressure, a doctor must be consulted before these medications are taken.