Most people experience knee pain at some stage in their life. Knee pain can occur because of one or more reasons – those who are overweight or underweight, an inactive lifestyle, traumatic incident, etc. Knee pain is practically unavoidable but can become chronic if left untreated. You don’t need to stick to it and consider it a part of the routine. The very first step is to figure out where the knee pain is coming from. Initial diagnosis is important to combat the condition. When it comes to knee surgery, it can be quite daunting to even think of it. Well, you can always consider the alternatives for effective pain management. Let’s take a look at some of the common knee pain conditions.
Knee Ligament Injuries
If there is any injury in the ligaments, you are more likely to experience knee pain. The primary function of ligaments is to connect the thigh bone to the lower leg bones. They keep the bones together for knee stability. Knee ligament sprains are common sports injuries that may occur at the anterior cruciate ligament ACL Repair medial collateral ligament (MCL), and posterior cruciate ligament (PCL). These injuries may also occur from high-impact accidents such as car accidents.
A few other injuries may take place in the knee cartilage. It is referred to as semi-hard yet flexible tissue covering the bone ends. The medial meniscus is positioned on the inside of the knee while the lateral meniscus is set on the outside. Unfortunately, if you are suffering from a meniscus tear it may require surgery. The injury occurs as a result of one high-impact movement. For example, an impulsive twist or turn can damage the knee cartilage.
Arthritis of the Knee
One of the most common conditions is arthritis. If you are suffering from arthritis, you are more likely to experience pain and inflammation in the joints. The pain commonly occurs in the knee. It can become chronic if left untreated and eventually may require surgery to treat. Some of the most frequently occurring symptoms of arthritis include pain and swelling in the knee, difficulty in bending the knee, and intense knee pain. The three most common types of arthritis include osteoarthritis, post-traumatic arthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis. If you are suffering from any of these conditions, it’s important to consult a doctor immediately and follow the recommended treatment program.
Let’s take a look at some of the alternative treatment options!
Painkillers and Injections
One major benefit of using painkillers is that you can get rid of pain instantly. On the other hand, injections can have a lasting effect but it’s a comparatively long procedure and can take up to several weeks. However, if you entirely depend on these treatments, it can be more harmful and can further affect the cartilage in some cases.
Weight Loss and Exercise
Weight loss and exercise are some of the best-recommended treatment approaches for osteoarthritis. Your muscles are the shock or impact absorbing mechanism of the body so make sure to keep them strong to perform any physical activity. Weight loss keeps the weight minimal on the knees and perfectly maintains the balance. If you lose an extra amount of body weight, you are more likely to preserve the required knee cartilage. Less body weight reduces the weight on painful bones.
Knee Braces, Walkers & Canes
While physical activity can provide effective bone pain relief, it’s not the only solution to help you in the long term. It takes time and effort to build muscle endurance and balance the body weight. Many other challenges come along when making lifestyle changes in the long run. This can help you to get rid of bone on bone knee pain. Opting for external supports such as walkers or canes especially for older individuals can provide you the much-needed support.
At the end of the day, undergoing a comprehensive medical examination by consulting a professional doctor will help in preventing unwanted pain and keep you healthy and fit. Let’s take a look at one more important health aspect you will want to consider – plantar fasciitis.
The plantar area of the body is referred to as the sole. It’s a chronic condition that may occur because of the stretched ligament under the sole. It is one of the most common injuries caused by consistent strain injury affecting the ligament of the feet. The injury can occur for one or more reasons such as excessive walking, jumping, or wearing inappropriate footgear. Besides, it can be caused because of other underlying health conditions such as reactive arthritis.
Treatment for Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar fasciitis can be treated in multiple ways by focusing on how to reduce inflammation and prevent any further injury. You may want to consider anti-inflammatory medication such as cortisone injections and ibuprofen. You can even choose sports running shoes featuring soft and cushioned soles. They can absolutely minimize tissue inflammation as a result of plantar fasciitis. The orthotic shoe inserts primarily focus on reducing the strain in the foot. If the condition has become chronic, you may require surgery in case other treatment options fail to perform. At the same time stretching and strengthening exercises can be quite effective to relieve pain.
Physical Therapy: A physical therapist can recommend you a sequence of exercises to help in strengthening the lower leg muscles. They will further guide you on supporting the feet’ bottom.
Night Splints: Your doctor is more likely to recommend you a splint stretching your calf and foot arch to help you with quality sleep.
Orthotics: The orthotics come with modified arch supports to evenly distribute weight or pressure to the feet.
Other Lifestyle Cures
Here are a few self-care tips for plantar fasciitis treatment you will like to consider:
- Keep a healthy weight since added weight can exert stress on the plantar fascia.
- Supportive shoes provide extra support with thick soles and the required cushioning. Avoid walking barefoot.
- You may want to consider low-impact sport such as walking or bicycling.
- Apply icing to minimize pain and inflammation. For this purpose, you can use a cloth-covered ice pack.
- Try simple home exercises for the right stretch to calf muscles and plantar fascia.
Life is unexpected and you never know when you start experiencing a health problem. Strengthening your knee and foot muscles is important for the required movement and to keep your body stable. If you are experiencing any of the conditions discussed in the article, consulting a doctor right away will help. They will recommend you physical therapy and other exercises to recover the movement and help you with a healthy lifestyle.
They will evaluate your knee or foot to figure out if there is any swelling, pain, or visible bruising. Primarily depending on the intensity of your condition, they will formulate a detailed treatment program for your needs. Make sure to follow the doctor’s recommendations because nothing comes before your health. Are you experiencing any of these painful conditions? If yes, let us know about the suggested treatment options in the comment section below.