About a quarter of Americans suffer from chronic knee pain, with symptoms that affect even simple daily activities, like walking and climbing stairs.
While today, there are many innovative treatments that can help, there are also some things you can do on your own to help relieve symptoms and enjoy greater mobility.
As a leading provider of pain management treatments, Pacific Sports and Spine offers custom treatment plans for knee pain, including lifestyle guidance to help you feel better.
Here are five steps that our team recommends to help relieve your painful knee symptoms as quickly as possible.
Many types of knee pain are associated with inflammation inside the joint. Resting your knee allows time for the inflammation to subside so your knee can heal naturally.
For minor injuries, a day or two of taking it easy may be all it takes. For more severe knee problems or some types of chronic pain, you may need more permanent adjustments in your activity levels, or you might benefit from a brace or other assistive device.
Ice helps relieve painful sensations, and it can also help reduce inflammation inside the knee joint. An ice pack is fine, but if you don’t have one handy, a bag of frozen peas is a remarkably good substitute, because it can be molded around the joint.
Whichever option you use, place a thin cloth between the ice pack and your skin to protect it, and apply the pack for no more than 20 minutes at a time.
While ice is good at relieving inflammation, a heating pad or hot water bottle can be a good choice for pain due to muscle strain. Alternating heat and ice therapies can also be beneficial by increasing circulation to the area, aiding in natural healing.
More accurately, put your knees up. Elevating your sore leg on pillows is another way to reduce inflammation. Just make sure your knee is supported by pillows. Elevating only your feet can put added strain on the joint, actually making your symptoms worse. If you have a recliner, that works, too.
We often prescribe compression garments following joint surgery (and some other surgeries, too) to help alleviate fluid buildup that can happen along with inflammation. Compression also promotes circulation and added stability to weakened and damaged tissues.
If you opt for this route, ask your provider about the best type of compression garment to use and how long to use it. A compression brace that’s too tight can wind up cutting off circulation and damaging tissue.
Of course, before using any type of home remedy for knee pain, schedule an evaluation to determine what’s causing your pain. Some types of knee pain require a more aggressive approach to prevent further damage that might lead to long-term disability.
Knee pain happens for different reasons, and it affects patients in different ways. The key to finding long-term relief is to see a pain specialist with experience in tailoring treatment plans to the individual patient.
We use a patient-centered approach to knee pain, offering an array of treatment options depending on your needs. In addition to lifestyle adjustments, your treatment plan might include such medical treatments as:
Using a custom approach also allows us to adjust your treatment over time as your symptoms and lifestyle change.
If you’re suffering from chronic or recurrent knee pain, don’t ignore it. Learn how we can help. Book an appointment online or over the phone today at Pacific Sports and Spine, with offices in Eugene and Roseburg, Oregon.