Most of the time, people can recall the exact moment when they received a painful injury. For instance, a fall, automobile accident, or sports injury leaves a distinct impression. However, sometimes pain and dysfunction manifest without a clear inciting incident. When this occurs, the culprit is often a repetitive stress injury.
What is a Repetitive Stress Injury?
A repetitive stress injury is just what it sounds like – an injury caused by repetitive movement. The movement does not have to be extreme or at the limits of your range of motion. Take moving a finger to press a key on a keyboard, for example. Such a movement is simple and not likely to cause harm. However, if you repeat that movement a thousand times a day over many days, you can easily cause an injury.
Repetitive stress injuries can be strains, sprains, inflammation, and even bone issues. You may pull a ligament, irritate a muscle, injure a joint capsule, or suffer from tiny joint misalignments, called subluxations. A repetitive stress injury may appear suddenly or come on gradually. Repeating the offending motion will often aggravate the injury and cause further pain.
Work and Play
The main sources of repetitive stress injuries are work and recreational pursuits. People who perform manual labor for a living may suffer an injury from performing the same motion over and over for 40 hours a week. Similarly, you may experience a repetitive stress injury from playing sports or engaging in a hobby like gardening. For example, it is very common for baseball pitchers to incur repetitive stress injuries in their elbows and shoulders.
How Chiropractic Treatment Can Help Your Recovery
It is not always easy to recognise the cause of an injury, but your chiropractor can help identify the problem. Once you know the motion that brings on the injury, rest is one of the most important measures you can take. Additionally, holistic treatment approaches and anti-inflammatory measures like soft tissue massage, ultrasound, and heat and cold application are encompassed in chiropractic treatment.
Chiropractic adjustments can also help with recovery and pain relief if your joints have become misaligned through repetitive stress. These adjustments are always gentle and safe when administered by a qualified chiropractor.
Finally, your chiropractor is a great source of advice on the prevention of repetitive stress injuries. Whether it’s improved posture, exercises, or better ergonomics, your chiropractor can help keep you healthy and injury-free.