How To Treat Chronic Knee Pain

Chronic knee pain can affect people of any age, but it is somewhat more common among people in their middle to later years. Persistent knee pain can have several causes, and it can often be treated successfully without surgery.

Causes Of Chronic Knee Pain

One of the most common causes of chronic knee pain is osteoarthritis. This condition involves a gradual deterioration of the joint, causing inflammation and pain. Rheumatoid arthritis, an auto-immune condition, can also cause pain and swelling around the knee joint. Other common culprits include tendinitis, torn ligaments, bursitis, gout, and a meniscus tear. It's important to see a doctor with chronic knee pain in order to get a proper diagnosis and determine the best treatment options.

Physical Therapy

A doctor may recommend a course of physical therapy for chronic knee pain. Physical therapists use a combination of hands-on therapies, like joint manipulation and massage, and exercises that build both flexibility and strength. Some therapists also use passive treatments like ultrasound therapy or electric stimulation to decrease pain and improve circulation around the joint.

At-Home Treatments That Help With Knee Pain

Often, people with knee pain can get relief from over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen, aspirin, or naproxen. There are also some simple home remedies that can reduce the need for medication. For example, placing an ice pack wrapped in a towel on the knee for 15 minutes at a time can reduce pain by numbing the area and reducing inflammation. Elevating the knee and using a compression bandage can also help when arthritis pain flares.

Lifestyle Changes That Can Improve Knee Pain

Excess weight is known to exacerbate chronic knee pain because of pressure on the joints. Losing even a small percentage of body weight can make a big difference in terms of pain reduction. Wearing supportive shoes can help to minimize pain, and using knee braces and supports can protect the knee, especially during exercise. Some other lifestyle factors that can help with knee pain include strength training, especially for the legs, and regular exercise that is easy on the joints, such as walking or swimming.

Activities To Avoid With Knee Pain

One of the most important considerations for people with knee pain is fall prevention. Thus, people who deal with chronic knee pain should avoid climbing up or down steps without a sturdy handrail for support. High-impact exercise like jogging or sports that involve running, jumping, and twisting the body can also make knee pain worse, especially if the knee is not well protected. Check out Mueller braces and supports to learn more about protecting a painful knee.