Tendonitis is an inflammation of the tendons which results in severe pain and hindrances to mobility. The tendons are thick bands of tissues that connects the bones to the muscles. The chances of children contracting tendonitis is increasing nowadays due to the increased in activity level amongst them. Due to an emphasis on leading a healthier lifestyle, more kids are getting involved in sports.
Tendonitis is an overuse injury and the symptoms differ among patients. Initially, pain will only be experienced during involvement in sports. Gradually, it will start to pop up at random timings of the day. Eventually, pain will be felt even at rest and this will affect the different joints in the body. Tendonitis may also lead to instability in the knee due to the tendons loosening. Some patients may hear clicking sounds when they are flexing their knees. Another contributing factor is growth spurts or enthesis. This is a genetic issue that is not caused by overuse of the tendons. When a child is born with enthesis, there is no way to prevent or control him from getting tendonitis. The area that is most prone to tendon inflammation is the largest tendon in the body – the Achilles tendon.
Other reasons causing inflammation in the tendons may be due to excessive calcium intake causing calcium to deposit at the tendon sites. Improper warm ups and cool downs will also increase the risk of injuring the tendon. Obesity is also a contributing factor due to the need for the tendon to bear extra weight.
There are many common symptoms and these include experiencing pain at the joints accompanied by swelling and tenderness. The affected area will also be stiff and mobility is limited. The surrounding muscles may feel weak and sore to the touch.
Treatment methods will differ amongst patients but the most common ones are the usage of ice packs, gel cooling packs and hot packs to soothe and relieve muscles. In cases that are slightly more serious, doctors may prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin. In severe cases, surgery may be required to replace the tendon with a graft.
Tendonitis can be prevented through proper warm ups and cooling down sessions before and after engaging in sport activities. However for kids with growth spurts, it cannot be prevented. A healthy lifestyle must be maintained but not at the expense of suffering an injury during the course of keeping fit.