- Keep Extra Pounds Off
- Be In Shape to Play Your Sport
- Practice Perfectly
- Get Strong, Stay Flexible
- Be Smart About Exercise
- Get Expert Advice
- Consider a Chiropractor
- Use a Walking Aid
- Don’t Let Your Shoes Worsen it
- Use RICE
1. Keep Extra Pounds Off
The first of our 10 ways to deal with knee pain is to maintain a healthy weight; it’s one of the best things you can do for your knees. Every extra pound puts additional strain on your joints, increasing the risk of injuries and osteoarthritis.
Knee pain is one of the most common complications of being overweight or obese. If you’re among the millions of people who experience chronic knee pain, even a small weight loss can help reduce pain and lower the risk of osteoarthritis.
According to a 2011 report from the Institute of Medicine, of the roughly 100 million American adults who experience common chronic pain, nearly 20 percent, or 20 million people, have knee pain. This is second only to the number of people with lower back pain. More than two-thirds of people in the United States are either overweight (with a BMI between 25 and 29.9) or obese (with a BMI of 30 or higher). Those extra pounds increase the stress on your knees. That stress can cause chronic pain and lead to other complications such as OA.
Each pound of weight loss can reduce the load on the knee joint by 4 pounds. Lose 10 pounds, and that’s 40 fewer pounds per step that your knees must support. And the results add up quickly. Less pressure means less wear and tear on the knees.
2. Be In Shape To Play Your Sport
To prepare your muscles for the demands of sports participation, take time for conditioning. Work with a coach or trainer to ensure that your technique and movement are the best they can be.
Regular physical activity helps maintain joint function, including strength and range of motion in the knees, which means less force gets applied to the knee. Although it used to be believed that high-impact activities such as running are bad for the knees, the latest evidence shows that’s not necessarily true.
But there is a sweet spot for runners: A meta-analysis of 17 studies, published in the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy, found that recreational runners had a much lower risk of developing osteoarthritis of the knee than competitive runners and sedentary people did.
Physical activities that strengthen your hips, quads, calves and ankles are also good for your knees, while weakness in any of those areas can increase knee strain and risk of injury. Being educated while exercising is essential in maximizing effectiveness and reducing risk of injury. A personal trainer will teach you everything you need to know about exercising. They will put together the perfect routine to help you achieve your goals, and demonstrate the correct posture for each exercise.
3. Practice Perfectly
The third of 10 ways to deal with knee pain is to make sure the technique and movement patterns you use in your sports or activity are the best they can be. Lessons from a professional can be very helpful.
Left to their own devices, many individuals wind up on cardio machines at the gym or listlessly moving from one piece of exercise equipment to another. A personal trainer can ensure the individual spends their time performing the right exercises with the proper equipment. Personal trainers are also ideal for individuals who can only commit a limited amount of time to the gym per week. A personal trainer can maximize their time to see results.
If an individual tries to use a piece of gym equipment he or she is unfamiliar with, they are likely to have incorrect form. Lifting weights without proper form is a recipe for lasting or serious injuries. A personal trainer can teach individuals the right form and correct them as they go through the exercises, thereby reducing the risk of injuries. Fitness can be confusing.
There is a lot of information to sort through. Eat this, not that. Cardio before or after strength training? Your trainer can help you find credible information and provide direction on your fitness journey. A trainer can help remove the guesswork so you can put all your energy toward accomplishing your goals.
4. Get Strong, Stay Flexible
Because weak muscles are a leading cause of knee injuries, you’ll benefit from building up your quadriceps and hamstrings, which support your knees. Balance and stability training helps the muscles around your knees work together more effectively. And because tight muscles also can contribute to injury, stretching is important. Try to include flexibility exercises in your workouts.
When it comes to pre-workout stretching, stretching before a workout helps your body to become more pliable, which decreases your risk for injury. You want to stretch the main muscle groups that you plan on working during that exercise session. For example, if you’re going to be running, or doing lower body strength exercises, you probably want to stretch your hamstrings, quads, glutes, and calves.
Stretching keeps the muscles flexible, strong, and healthy, and we need that flexibility to maintain a range of motion in the joints. Without it, the muscles shorten and become tight. Then, when you call on the muscles for activity, they are weak and unable to extend all the way. That puts you at risk for joint pain, strains, and muscle damage.
Post stretches or maintenance stretches are just as or if not more important than stretching prior to your workout, after your warm up. The main muscles groups used during the session are the ones that need to stretch. Post workout stretches are great for helping your body to move excess lactic acid out of your muscles, which can help you avoid post workout soreness. Post workout stretches also help get the muscle back to their original length.
5. Be Smart About Exercise
If you have osteoarthritis, chronic knee pain or recurring injuries, you may need to change the way you exercise. Consider switching to swimming, water aerobics or other low-impact activities — at least for a few days a week. Sometimes simply limiting high-impact activities will provide relief.
The buoyancy of the water supports a portion of your body weight, and puts less stress on your aching knee. A regular water exercise program can reduce your joint stiffness, strengthen muscles around your joints and increase flexibility. In addition, swimming is a great aerobic and total body workout as it engages almost every major muscle group, requiring a person to use their arms, legs, torso and abdomen to move through the water.
These advantages are good for joint health, and the demands of swimming on the upper body provide aerobic exercise for a healthy heart. You can expect to burn 400 to 500 more calories per hour when exercising in the water. Additionally, water offers 12 times the resistance of air, which helps to improve muscle strength. You can add even more resistance to your water routine with hand-held paddles and kickboards. The pool is also a great place to work on overall flexibility by performing stretches. Water workouts are ideal for weight loss, cardiac rehabilitation, and helping to preserve joint motion.
6. Get Expert Advice
If your knee pain is new, get a Chiropractor to check it out. It’s best to know what you’re dealing with ASAP so you can prevent any more damage.
Knee pain can be caused by problems with the knee joint itself, or it can be caused by conditions affecting the soft tissues — ligaments, tendons or bursae — that surround the knee. The severity of knee pain can vary widely. Some people may feel only a slight twinge, while others may experience debilitating knee pain that interferes with their day-to-day activities. In most cases, self-care measures can help you cope with knee pain.
Make an appointment with your Chiropractor if your knee pain was caused by a particularly forceful impact or if it’s accompanied by:
- Significant swelling
- Tenderness and warmth around the joint
- Significant pain
If you’ve had minor knee pain for some time, make an appointment with your chiropractor if the pain worsens to the point that it interferes with your usual activities or sleep.
7. Consider Seeing a Chiropractor.
Chiropractic adjustments can help sore knees and are most effective when combined with complementary corrective exercise. Knee pain is commonly caused by muscle imbalances and structural misalignment around the hip, knee, and ankle joints brought on by poor posture, overuse & repetitive stress, and physical trauma.
Our Non-Invasive, No-Drug treatment protocol for your chronic conditions combines The Trigenics™ NON-SURGICAL Operation with Pulsed Frequency Therapy(PEMF), Intersegmental Traction, Rebuilder Nerve Pacer, and Anti-Inflammatory Nutrition.
Chiropractic adjustments of the hips, spine, and patello-femoral joint can help to mobilize the joints back into the proper alignment for your body. This can alleviate joint stress, reduce inflammation, and facilitate healing of the joint and surrounding soft tissue. When combined with corrective exercises that complement and reinforce your adjustments, treatment can be very effective.
8. Use a walking aid.
A crutch or cane can take the stress off of your knee. Knee splints and braces can also help you stay stable.
If you have knee osteoarthritis, you might be hesitant to live an active life and further tax your already achy joints. That’s where assistive devices come in. They can not only help reduce knee stiffness and pain, but also improve mobility and help you stay independent.
While some devices are available in stores, others can be customized with a prescription from your doctor. If you think you may benefit from the use of assistive devices, work with a physical therapist and an occupational therapist to discuss which would be best for you.
9. Don’t let your shoes make matters worse
Cushioned insoles can reduce stress on your knees. For knee osteoarthritis, doctors often recommend special insoles that you put in your shoe. To find the appropriate insole, speak with your doctor or a physical therapist.
Knee pain can be caused or made much worse by the amount of force generated to your joints (especially your knees!) each time you take a step. Orthotics can help distribute that force more evenly throughout the foot and ankle, which in turn distributes force more evenly to your knees. In the same vein, orthotics can provide cushioning to your feet and heels, which reduces the amount of impact your knees will feel when you walk or run.
Orthotics can help improve alignment of the foot and ankle, which in turn improves alignment of the knees and creates a healthier gait. Supination or overpronation (in which the foot turns too far inward or outward) can mean that undue stress and impact are absorbed by the feet–which is in turn absorbed by your knees! Orthotics help correct this problem.
10. Use “RICE”
Rest, ice, compression, and elevation (RICE) is good for knee pain caused by a minor injury or an arthritis flare. Give your knee some rest, apply ice to reduce swelling, wear a compression bandage, and keep your knee elevated.
As soon as possible after an injury, such as a knee or ankle sprain, you can relieve pain and swelling and promote healing and flexibility with RICE—Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation
- Rest. Rest and protect the injured or sore area. Stop, change, or take a break from any activity that may be causing your pain or soreness.
- Ice. Cold will reduce pain and swelling. Apply an ice or cold pack right away to prevent or minimize swelling. Apply the ice or cold pack for 10 to 20 minutes, 3 or more times a day. After 48 to 72 hours, if swelling is gone, apply heat to the area that hurts. Do not apply ice or heat directly to the skin. Place a towel over the cold or heat pack before applying it to the skin.
- Compression. Compression, or wrapping the injured or sore area with an elastic bandage (such as an Ace wrap), will help decrease swelling. Don’t wrap it too tightly, because this can cause more swelling below the affected area. Loosen the bandage if it gets too tight. Signs that the bandage is too tight include numbness, tingling, increased pain, coolness, or swelling in the area below the bandage. Talk to your doctor if you think you need to use a wrap for longer than 48 to 72 hours; a more serious problem may be present.
- Elevation. Elevate the injured or sore area on pillows while applying ice and anytime you are sitting or lying down. Try to keep the area at or above the level of your heart to help minimize swelling.
If you struggle with knee pain, there is no need to suffer. There are many ways to deal with your knee pain WITHOUT SURGERY. We hope these 10 Ways to Deal With Knee Pain are helpful to you. If you are in the Fort Myers area, contact Active Health Complete Relief Care to find relief today.