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What to do About Knee Pain
Knee pain can range from mild to severe and can vary from a dull ache to a stabbing, searing pain. Whether your pain developed suddenly or gradually over time, below you’ll learn about the causes, along with some little things you can do to help reduce your knee pain before considering treatment.
What is the cause of knee pain?
People of all ages can experience knee pain. And it may start suddenly, most times after an injury or exercise—or just as a mild discomfort that slowly gets worse. To manage your pain, you have to first find the cause.
This video will help you learn about the components of your knee, what may be the source of your pain, and treatment options that you can discuss with your doctor.
What can I do to help my knee pain?
Whether you’re having trouble going up and down stairs or you feel like you’re missing out on doing what you love, there are some changes you can make to help reduce your knee pain.
There are little changes in your lifestyle that can make a big difference, from maintaining a healthy weight to exercising regularly. Here are some tips:
• Manage your weight: Every extra pound you weigh adds four pounds of pressure on your knee joint. So by staying healthy, you can avoid unnecessary stress on your joints.1
• Wear the right footwear: Avoid high heels, but if you do choose to go with one, go with a heel that’s one-half to three-quarters of an inch high.
• Exercise: Your doctor and physical therapist will recommend certain exercises for you to help strengthen the muscles that support your knee, but be sure to perform them correctly so as to not strain any muscles.
• Be careful on stairs: Always hold the railing as you go up and down stairs to help alleviate some of the pressure on your knee.
If you feel that knee pain is starting to interfere with your life, you can consider taking nutritional supplements, which may help keep your knee healthy. Talk to your doctor to see if any are recommended.
• Glucosamine: Derived from shellfish, it’s an amino sugar that aids in repair of cartilage and other body tissues, and is often combined with chondroitin for arthritis treatment.
• Chondroitin: A naturally occurring sugar, that joins with protein to help the body’s cartilage maintain its stability, that’s obtained from animals such as cattle, pigs and sharks.
• MSM (methylsulfonylmethane): A natural sulfur thought to have anti-inflammatory effects that’s found in some plants, foods and beverages.
Learn About Treatment Options
Osteoarthritis is the most common chronic disorder that affects the joints1. It happens when the cartilage, or cushion, between the knee joints breaks down, which can cause pain, stiffness and swelling. There are many different treatment options, which you can learn about here, but you should talk to your doctor about what’s best for you.
What are knee injections?
If you no longer get pain relief from treatment methods such as ice and heat, physical therapy and pain medications such as ibuprofen, your doctor may recommend an injection. There are different kinds of injections that can help you manage your knee pain.
What is arthroscopic surgery?
Arthroscopic surgery is a minimally invasive approach that can be used to diagnose and treat problems in your knee. It allows the surgeon to see inside your joint without making a large incision, and can even repair some types of joint damage.
1. https://www.arthritis.org/health-wellness/healthy-living/nutrition/weight-loss/oa-diagnosis-why-weight-loss-matters; Accessed Aug. 27th, 2020
Important Safety Information
As with any medical treatment, individual results may vary. The performance of knee replacements depends on your age, weight, activity level and other factors. There are potential risks, and recovery takes time. People with conditions limiting rehabilitation should not have this surgery. Only an orthopaedic surgeon can determine if knee replacement is right for you.
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