Your tendons are tough yet elastic bands of tissue that attach your muscles to your bones, and you have around 4,000 of them all over your body, according to experts. Other than connecting muscles to bones, your tendons also make it possible for you to move your various joints.
Overuse of your tendons can leave it inflamed, which is something referred to as “tendinitis” by those in the medical community (sometimes you may come across “tendonitis” but those two are the very same things). Surely, tendinitis can cause a great deal of pain most especially when you attempt to move the joints to which the affected tendons are attached. As a result, mobility of the joint is considerably reduced.
Have you heard of jumper’s knee or tennis elbow? Well, those two are examples of tendinitis. However, tendinitis can strike just about any joint on the body, not just the knees or elbows. It also commonly affects the ankles, shoulders, fingers and wrists — and others where tendons are present.
Anyone who uses certain joints in the body repeatedly is at risk of having tendinitis, which means that it’s not just athletes that are susceptible to the painful and at times debilitating problem. If you play and musical instrument or you like gardening, then you are at risk of having tendinitis. Even constantly typing on your computer keyboard and playing video games or chatting on your smart phone can increase your risk of winding up with tendinitis.
There are everyday habits that can weaken the tendons, making them more susceptible to becoming achy and inflamed, doctors say. And you may be guilty of those habits, which means an increased likelihood of having tendinitis. Below are some of the things you should avoid to keep your tendons in tip-top shape:
Skipping Warm Ups
Warming up not only prepares the muscles for exercising, but also the tendons, thus making them less susceptible to becoming injured. Doing warm ups is not only recommended prior to exercising or engaging in sports, but also before doing just about any strenuous physical activity that can cause a great deal of stress on your joints.
Lighting Up Cigarettes
Everyone knows that cigarette smoking is a habit that is bad for the lungs and heart. Not too many people know that smoking is also terrible for the tendons because your tendons require oxygen and nutrients in order to remain strong and healthy, and to recuperate effectively from an injury. But when you smoke cigarettes, the supply of much-needed oxygen and nutrients to the tendons is diminished because it hampers proper blood circulation.
It’s important for you to regularly give your joints a break, most especially those that you repeatedly engage while working out or playing sports, or simply carrying out your job. Especially if your tendons are achy and swollen, resting them is vital. Otherwise, you are risking getting torn tendons which can only be repaired by undergoing the knife.
Leading a Sedentary Life
Too much, rest, however is also bad for your tendons. It’s for the same reason why having a sedentary lifestyle can have your tendinitis risk considerably increased. Besides, being physically active is not only good for your tendons and joints, but also your overall health and wellbeing.
Having Poor Eating Habits
Your tendons are mostly made up of collagen, which is something that is synthesized by your body with the help of vitamin C. It’s exactly for this reason why failure to add lots of vitamin C-rich foods to your diet on an everyday basis can make your tendons susceptible to getting injured and inflamed. Opting for a well-balanced diet also ensures that your tendons are supplied with all the other nutrients it needs, like manganese, magnesium, zinc and B vitamins.