What is an Overuse Injury?
Overuse injuries are a type of injury that occurs when you overdo it with an activity and your body can’t handle the stress. This type of injury is common in athletes who train intensely or participate in repetitive motions. Overuse injuries often happen gradually, which can make them difficult to detect and treat.
Sometimes overuse injuries can be caused by a single, traumatic event. But more often, they’re the result of repetitive stress on your body over time. This type of injury is also called an overuse syndrome or cumulative trauma disorder (CTD).
Overuse injuries often affect tendons, the tissues that connect muscles to bones. They can also affect muscles, ligaments, and joints.
Common overuse injuries include:
- Achilles tendonitis: inflammation of the Achilles tendon, the large tendon at the back of your ankle
- Patellar tendonitis: inflammation of the patellar tendon, which connects your knee cap to your shin bone
- Tennis elbow: inflammation of the tendons in your elbow, usually from repetitive motions of the arm and wrist
- Golfer’s elbow: inflammation of the tendons in your elbow, usually from overuse of the muscles in your forearm
- Shoulder impingement: compression of the shoulder muscles and tendons
If you think you have an overuse injury, it’s important to see our chiropractor in Tacoma. They can diagnose the problem and develop a treatment plan. Without treatment, overuse injuries can become chronic conditions that are difficult to manage.
Common Causes of Overuse Injury
There are a number of factors that can contribute to overuse injuries, including:
- Poor form or technique during an activity
- Lack of warm-ups or cool-downs
- Muscular imbalances
- Poor footwear
- Increased intensity or duration of an activity
Symptoms of Overuse Injury
When an overuse injury occurs, it can cause:
- Pain and discomfort
- Limited range of motion and mobility
- Loss of sensation, numbness
- Loss of strength
You may not experience noticeable symptoms at first, as they gradually get worse over time. If you are active or find yourself repeating similar activities or motions frequently, it’s important to pay attention to the impact this has on your body so you can try and catch any overuse injuries from developing and progressing.
How to Prevent an Overuse Injury
There are a few things you can do to prevent overuse injuries, including:
Wearing the proper gear: Make sure you have the right shoes and other gear for your activity.
Proper form: Use good technique when you’re participating in an activity. Avoiding jerking motions or over-extending your joints.
Warm-ups and cool-downs: Always warm up before you participate in any activity. This helps increase blood flow to your muscles and reduces your risk of injury. After you’re done with your activity, make sure to cool down so your muscles don’t tighten up.
Stretching: Incorporate regular stretching into your routine. This will help improve your flexibility and reduce your risk of overuse injuries.
Cross-training: Don’t overdo it with any one activity. Mix up your routine so you’re not putting too much stress on one area of your body.
Treatment for Overuse Injury in Tacoma
If you think you may have an overuse injury, the first step is to see our chiropractor in for an evaluation. They will ask about your symptoms and how they started. They will also perform a physical exam.
Once a diagnosis has been made, our chiropractor in Tacoma will develop a treatment plan that is specific to your needs. Treatment options can vary depending on the type and severity of your overuse injury.
Common treatments for overuse injuries include:
Rest: It’s important to rest the affected area to allow it to heal. This may mean taking a break from your usual activities or sports.
Ice: Applying ice to the affected area can help reduce pain and swelling.
Heat: Applying heat to the affected area can help loosen tight muscles and reduce pain.
Stretching and strengthening exercises: Specific exercises can help improve flexibility and strength.
Chiropractic care: Chiropractic adjustment can help relieve pain and improve range of motion.
Chiropractic Care in Tacoma for Overuse Injury
If you’re experiencing symptoms of an overuse injury, don’t wait to seek treatment. Our chiropractors in Tacoma can help diagnose and treat your condition so you can get back to your normal activities as soon as possible.
Get in touch with us today and book your appointment!