Did you know that about 1 in 5 Americans are struggling with knee pain?
When the usual methods of dealing with knee pain, like RICE (rest, ice, compression, and elevation), aren’t working, it can get extremely frustrating.
Fortunately, many non-surgical treatments will help reduce chronic pain symptoms in your knee and knee joint.
Used individually or in combination, these treatments can reduce joint pain, increase mobility, and improve your overall quality of life.
In the article below, we will talk about chronic knee pain and how it can be treated, and when you need to see a specialist.
What’s Chronic Knee Pain?
Chronic knee pain is defined as long-term pain, swelling, or sensitivity in one or both of your knees.
Several things can cause chronic knee pain, and what’s causing yours will depend on the symptoms you’re experiencing.
There are many medical conditions, like knee osteoarthritis and injuries that can cause your knee pain, but fortunately, many treatments exist that can bring you relief.
Each case of chronic knee pain will be different, and no two people will experience it the same way.
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The Causes Of Chronic Knee Pain
As we mentioned above, the causes of chronic knee pain will vary, but it’s usually the result of one of two things.
The first cause is trauma. Traumatic knee injuries usually happen suddenly, like a fall or car accident.
But they can also be the result of a repetitive motion that wears your knee down over time.
The second cause is certain medical conditions.
As we get older, our bodies become more vulnerable to degenerative disorders like arthritis.
Some of these conditions can negatively affect our joints which can lead to chronic pain.
Chronic knee pain will cause ongoing discomfort in your knee, usually in the form of swelling or sensitivity, and it can affect either knee.
Traumatic injuries can also lead to a dislocation of the kneecap, fractures, tears in the ligaments, or a meniscus tear.
Any of these injuries can cause severe pain and lead to a chronic condition if they aren’t treated.
Many traumatic injuries are often preventable with simple activities, like warming up properly before physical activity and wearing the proper safety equipment.
Some traumatic injuries and medical conditions aren’t preventable, though.
Degenerative issues, like osteoarthritis, a common type of arthritis, as well as gout or eve tumors, can cause chronic knee pain.
There’s little you can do to prevent these issues from happening.
Other medical conditions that can cause chronic knee pain are:
- Tendonitis: A pain in the front part of your knee that gets worse with continued movement.
- Baker’s cyst: When the fluid in your knee builds up, it can form a baker’s cyst, which can cause ongoing knee pain.
- Bursitis: An overused knee without proper rest can become inflamed, resulting in knee bursitis.
- Chondromalacia patella: Chondromalacia patella occurs when the cartilage below your kneecap is damaged.
- Osteosarcoma: A type of bone cancer that most often happens in the knee.
- Cellulitis: Cellulitis occurs when the good bacteria that live on our skin bacteria ends up under the skin’s protective surface, causing a bacterial infection.
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Are You At Risk For Chronic Knee Pain?
If you’re overweight or obese, you are at a much greater risk for developing knee problems.
Maintaining a healthy weight is the best thing you can do to combat chronic knee pain, and being overweight or obese is the greatest risk factor for chronic knee pain.
For every pound you are overweight, your knee absorbs an extra 4 pounds of pressure when you walk, run, or climb stairs.
Other factors that influence your risk for developing chronic knee pain are previous injuries or trauma, activity levels and physical exercise, and age.
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How Is Chronic Knee Pain Diagnosed?
Each possible cause of chronic knee pain will require different diagnostic tests.
The diagnostic tests used to diagnose knee pain can include blood work, a physical exam, X-rays, CT scans, MRIs, and other imaging tests.
The condition you have will determine the types o tests your doctor will order to see what’s causing your pain so you can identify ways you can fix chronic knee pain symptoms.
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How To Fix Chronic Knee Pain
Diet and Weight Loss
Since obesity is a major risk factor for chronic knee pain, losing weight and maintaining a healthy diet is one of the best treatment options and preventative measures.
Carrying excess weight puts more stress on your joints and increases your risk of knee pain.
Losing weight will help reduce long-term knee pain, including pain caused by arthritis.
Excess body weight also increases inflammation throughout the body, which affects your knees.
The first step to reducing weight is eating a healthy diet.
The Arthritis Foundation recommends a Mediterranean-style diet rich in fresh produce to remove excess body weight and reduce your odds of developing chronic knee.
If you are overweight and suffering from knee pain, we urge you to lose weight.
A doctor or certified dietitian can help you decide how much weight a person needs to lose and help you plan a suitable diet.
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Modify Your Activities
Modifying your activities will also help reduce the strain on your knees.
We can’t stop doing everything that hurts or puts stress on our knees, but we can do our best to limit or avoid others.
We put the most stress on our knees when we do things like climbing up and down stairs, climbing ladders, or squatting down.
If you see that a certain activity or exercise causes your knee pain to flare up, finding an alternative way to perform it or avoiding it completely can help reduce the frequency of your knee pain.
Apart from receiving physical therapy from a physical therapist, they can also be beneficial in teaching modified or optimal ways to perform activities while reducing the stress on your knees.
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Low-impact exercise can provide pain relief for sore knees.
When we are in pain, we typically want to avoid moving the painful joint.
But in some cases, like with osteoarthritis, too much rest can be harmful and make your knee pain worse, while exercise can make it feel better.
Most people are surprised to find that low-impact exercises are one of the first things recommended for managing knee pain, and they have some of the best supporting evidence for symptom relief.
Low impact aerobic exercises combine two essential elements of movement that help with knee pain.
The first is that they are low-impact.
This means that they move your body and your knees without putting unnecessary stress on your joints.
Some great examples of low-impact exercises for your knees are swimming, cycling, and using an elliptical trainer.
All of these activities avoid twisting, jumping, or deep bending.
The second important element is that they are aerobic.
This means that they sustain activity long enough, at least 20-30 minutes, to increase the heart rate and improve endurance in your muscles.
Starting a new low-impact aerobic exercise regimen 3-4 times a week for 20-30 minutes per session can reduce pain and improve function in your knees if you have knee osteoarthritis or another painful condition.
It still may be in your best interest to wear a knee brace while doing these activities. Discuss this with your doctor.
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See A Knee Pain Specialist
Using some of the remedies above will help you find relief from your chronic knee pain.
Whether you lose weight, start performing low-impact aerobic exercises, or modify your activities, you want to find relief and a way to fix chronic knee pain you are living with.
At Ethos Health Group, we understand and can help you fix chronic knee pain when home remedies are not providing the knee pain relief you need.
We have developed a proprietary HyalRegen-CT method as a comprehensive solution for those suffering from knee arthritis and chronic pain.
The specialists at Ethos Health Group perform lubricating injections under precision imaging guidance.
This advanced medical process adds the cushioning fluid that acts as a shock absorber back into and around your knee.
These F.D.A. approved injections can help your knees stimulate more of their natural fluid, giving you long-term benefits and relief.
To learn more about what the Ethos Health Group can do for your chronic knee pain, click the button below to schedule a free consultation.