How do I heal my 12 year old gymnast daughter's tendonitis FOREVER!?
by Christina L.
(Toronto, ON, Canada)
My 12-year-old daughter is a gymnast and injured her wrist doing a skill on balance beam. That was 3 months ago and her condition has not improved at all!
She's had extensive physiotherapy including ultrasound, cold/heat therapy, and acupuncture. She's taken anti-inflammatory drugs and ices her wrist regularly. She's had several x-rays to rule out growth plate and scaphoid bone fractures, both of which were negative.
She's now complaining that when she ices her wrist there is a spot that doesn't feel the cold, it feels warm. What is up with that? Has she caused nerve damage now?
I've read through your website, but all I've gotten is there's this secret remedy for tendonitis but I don't know what it is.
She has missed competing and will not be competing in the provincial championship this year. We are thinking that her gymnastics career may be over, and this has devastated her. More than that, as her parent, it is emotionally difficult to consider that my daughter may live in pain for the rest of her life. She has virtually no use of her right hand as a result of this injury.
Please let us know what we need to do to fix her so she can return to normal life and the passion she loves so much (gymnastics).
Anxiously awaiting your response.
Thanks for looking for help for your daughter. I can appreciate that.
I'm going to skip the condolences and words about how un-enjoyable the experience so far has been. I will say that injury can be confusing and scary, which you have perfectly described.
So, let's jump right in.
First off, I need more information.
1. What exactly was she doing when she injured herself? Please describe the position and action.
2. Was she totally pain free, and then got off the balance beam and was in pain? Or, it hurt later and you think it's from the balance beam, or?
3. Where exactly is that spot that feels warm when she is icing, and is that the spot where the worst of the pain is? Take and attach a picture with a finger or an arrow pointing to the spot, or describe as accurately as possible.
4. What exactly does 'icing regularly' mean? And, how exactly does she ice?
5. As far as your daughter's diet, how much protein does she regularly eat?
6. Does she/did she have other physical aches/pains?
7. What does 'virtually no use of her hand' mean? Meaning everything hurts? Or?
Secondly, you've read through the website and you have gotten much more than just that there's some secret Tendonitis cure.
You now know that there is no magic bullet or overnight fix.
You now know that anti-inflammatory drugs just aren't going to do the job.
(I should add more in there about ultrasound not doing the job. I don't understand why it's use is so prevalent)
You now know how Tendonitis, Inflammation, and the Pain Causing Dynamic works.
You also know How To Reduce Inflammation.
Have you been using the Ice Dip and Ice Massage routines with your daughter? Or is she just Ice Packing?
Thirdly, I'm guessing it's more of a cartilage bruise, or a tendon or ligament tear, as opposed to Tendonitis per se. But that's just my guess from what little you've said. I need more information.
And it's important for you to know, whether it's tendonitis, tendon or ligament tear, the treatment is basically the same. Absolutely fixable, though it will take some work and time.
How quickly she will be able to get back to competing is up to you, and her, and doing the most effective treatment methods. Plus a little bit of luck from her genetics and physical variables.
It is unlikely her career is over -if- you learn the secret to healing this kind of injury (kind of injury to be determined).
And, if she's looking at gymnastics as a career, it is in her best interest to learn how to avoid and fix her own injuries. You know how rough this sport is on our little warriors.
We can't do much for injuries inside a joint, or total rips/tears where a structure is separated into two pieces, or broken bones.
But for the kinds of injuries it sounds like you are describing, totally fixable with the right know-how.
Time and rest won't heal this at all, much less for forever, since the body heals back less structurally strong than it was before if left to it's own devices. You remember this from reading through the website.
As far as your daughter having nerve damage from this, it's incredibly unlikely.
As far as still being in acute pain three months later, this is not uncommon, and points to a raging Inflammatory response. I am not surprised her treatment plan so far hasn't produced satisfactory results.
Answer the above questions, and let's go from there. I'm happy to help.
Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expert