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TCM for Tendonitis

Irritation, inflammation, and pain in the tendons (tissue that connects muscle to bone) can occur throughout the body. Commonly known injuries such as tennis or golfer's elbow, Achilles' tendonitis, trigger finger, carpel tunnel, or jumper's knee are all due to tendon issues where there is pain and a loss of strength and function. Read on to learn more about tendonitis and see how Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) can help.


What is tendonitis

Tendonitis is an injury that develops over time from repetitive movement and improper body mechanics that stress the tendon. Tendons become less flexible with age, so it can be more common as you get older.

Acute tendonitis causes inflammation in the tendon, whereas in chronic issues it is more accurate that there are microtears and degeneration in the tissue.

Signs you might have tendonitis: pain or tenderness around a joint, sensations of cracking or grating, swelling, heat, pain worse with certain movements.



Typical allopathic medical treatments usually involve pain relievers and steroid injections. Cautions of steroid injections can include further deterioration and potential of rupturing the tendon. Here are some alternative options that can provide relief from pain as well as support you body in healing:

Acupuncture is one option for treatment through stimulating your body's innate healing response.

  • Acupuncture helps relieve pain and improve joint function through the release of endorphins and natural opioids.

  • Tendons do not have a lot of circulation, acupuncture brings micro-circulation to an injured area, speeding up recovery.

Celluma LED panel can accelerate tissue repair. The pain management setting uses a combination of near infrared and red light to boost cellular energy to encourage and enhance the body’s natural healing abilities. The light therapy can help increase collagen production to stimulating tendon repair.

Try an herbal liniment

There are many versions of herbal topicals with a history rooted in the martial arts. Some common ingredients found are the combination of camphor and menthol which create the familiar tingling sensations. The warming effect of camphor balances the cooling effect of menthol. Herbal combinations work to promote blood circulation, reduce inflammation and relieve pain and are available as patches, roll-ons, and oils.

Why not to ice for chronic pain?

The obvious, ice is cold. Cold causes contracting of muscles and congealing of blood, preventing the area from being nourished and waste products from being removed. There are herbs that are considered cooling, which make a good substitute for icing.

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