Risk Factors For Knee Pain
The following factors may increase the risk for knee pain in teens .
- Overweight and obesity may increase strain on knee joints
- Lack of muscle strength and flexibility may make the knee joint unstable during motion
- Certain sports involving repeated jumps, such as alpine skiing and basketball, may increase chances of knee pain
- History of knee injury can increase the risk of knee pain and further knee injuries
How Boswellia Supplements Reduce Knee Pain
Boswellia contains several anti-inflammatory substances, including boswellic acids, which are as effective in reducing pain as some non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs . Boswellia is particularly effective for reducing knee pain, and is often combined with other joint supplements such as turmeric and glucosamine to boost their effects.
When Boswellia extracts were added to cartilage cultures grown from people underoing knee replacement surgery, Boswellia was found to stabilise the cartilage, reduce loss of structural substances, and had a protective, anti-inflammatory effect that was predicted to reduce cartilage degeneration.
Krill Oil Supplements For Knee Pain
Krill are a tiny, shrimp-like crustaceans found in all the oceans of the world. They feed on microalgae from which they obtain omega-3 fatty acids and two antioxidant pigments, astaxanthin and canthaxanthin. These pigments are produced by algae to protect them from ultraviolet light and, when these algae and shrimps are eaten by wild flamingos, give them their attractive pink plumage. Without them flamingos would be grey. These carotenoid pigments, which also cause shrimps, prawns and lobsters to turn red when cooked, are the reason why krill oil has such a vibrant, crimson colour.
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How Rosehip Supplements Reduce Knee Pain
Rosehips contain a pain-killing complex of galactolipids which have an aspirin-like ability to inhibit two enzymes involved in the generation of pain and inflammation. They do this through a different mechanism to aspirin so rosehips do not cause the same intestinal side effects.
Galactolipids isolated from rosehips also inhibit the activity of inflammatory white blood cells, and lower levels of inflammatory markers in the blood. Reducing the movement of inflammatory cells into joints can reduce both pain and stiffness.
What Are Risk Factors For Knee Pain
Biomechanics: The knee joint is complicated in its operation and is used frequently throughout the day. Any change in the movement of the joint can cause subtle changes and cause pain and injuries.
Excess weight: The stress on the knee joint is increased with excess weight. Obesity also increases the risk of knee osteoarthritis as the cartilage breaks down more rapidly.
Overuse during repetitive motions as are found during certain exercises or work conditions can cause breakdown of cartilage and lead to pain.
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Regular Exercise To Support The Knee
The function of muscle is to support and move the knee. Walking is a weight bearing activity which helps to increase bone density.
Before starting any exercise program, it is important to consult your doctor, physiotherapist or Orthopaedic surgeon to get medical clearance and specific guidelines for what is appropriate for your particular situation. Once you have received medical clearance, it would also be a good idea to hire an advanced personal trainer to assess your gait and design a program to balance the muscles surrounding the hip, knee and ankle.
How Is The Cause Of Knee Pain Diagnosed
A thorough examination is necessary for an accurate determination. The examination should include an assessment of whether the pain actually stems from the knee. Sometimes knee pain can be referred pain from another source, such as a hip injury. Ã¢â¬ÅReferred painÃ¢â¬ï¿½ means that an injury or disease in one part of the body is causing pain in a different location.
When making a diagnosis, your doctor will consider information that includes the following:
- Patient characteristics. Some conditions are more likely to occur in individuals with certain characteristics. For example, osteoarthritis is more frequent in older adults, and conditions associated with overuse are more frequent in people who participate in athletic activities. Obesity can also be a factor in some conditions.
- Patient history. The physician asks questions to determine potential sources of trauma, such as car accidents or sports injuries. The physician will also ask where and when you feel the pain.
- Results of a physical examination. The physician moves and probes your knee for signs of damage to the muscle, tendon, or cartilage. This includes exploring the location of the pain, such as behind the knee, in front of the knee, or inside of or on top of the knee.
- Results of imaging and other tests. Sometimes X-rays, MRIs, or other diagnostic tests are needed to identify structural damage or abnormalities.
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When To Consider Knee Replacement
If your knee pain is chronic and worsening, recommended therapies provide insufficient relief, you find that youre unable to perform everyday activities without pain, and you have trouble walking without using an assistive device such as a cane, you might be a candidate for a knee replacement. Get the lowdown on this surgery.
Turmeric Supplements For Knee Pain
Turmeric is a familiar, yellow spice widely used to enhance the flavour and colour of curries. It is also a traditional Ayurvedic medicine used to treat inflammation and reduce pain.
The active ingredient in turmeric is a golden-yellow pigment, curcumin, which has powerful anti-inflammatory actions.
Turmeric supplements can be concentrated and standardised to contain as much as 95% curcumin, the active ingredient, per dose.
Several studies suggest that turmeric is as effective as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for alleviating knee pain but without the side effects.
The absorption of turmeric and curcumin from the digestive system is notoriously poor. Even so, turmeric still produces significant anti-inflammatory effects elsewhere in the body, such as reducing knee pain, even though no measurable levels are present.
The most likely explanation is that turmeric is able to interact with immune cells within the gut lining to reprogram how they respond to inflammation. Water soluble turmeric supplements with boosted absorption are now available for a more powerful dual action.
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Pain Behind Knee When Straightening Leg Other Causes
The pain associated with your knee has all been injuries however, we still have other conditions to share, so dont go just yet. Some of these conditions could be life-altering as you may never run or walk the same again.
That is why seeking help sooner than later can matter a whole lot. Some may be small and need the usual R.I.C.E method. The only way to know for sure is by having the scan done.
When Should I See A Pain Management Specialist
You should consult with a pain management specialist if your acute knee pain seems to be transitioning into chronic pain. Generally, this is when the pain lasts longer than 90 days, but it could be sooner. Pain that lasts longer than expected for the condition you have is a warning sign that the pain is becoming chronic.
Pain management specialists can provide diagnosis and treatment on their own or in consultation with other health care providers. These may include your primary care physician, orthopedist, rheumatologist, or physical therapist.
Orthopedists treat problems related to bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, and muscles. Rheumatologists specialize in the nonsurgical treatment of arthritis and other rheumatic diseases. Physical therapists use exercises and stretches, movement training, medical massage, and other hands-on techniques to help patients increase mobility, ease pain, and protect against further injury.
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Focus Your Efforts Elsewhere
Just because you are experiencing knee pain doesnt necessarily mean that the knee itself is the source of the discomfort. When assessing knee pain, looking at how the foot/ankle moves, is a great place to start.
Failure for the ankle to move throughout its full range of motion can lead to compensatory movements, which normally ends up finds itself occuring at the knee. Attempting to perform compound movements in the gym, jumping, sprinting, or even simple things such as going down stairs, all require adequate ankle mobility, especially into dorsiflexion range of motion. Address and clean up your ankle mobility with these drills below:
#1 Half Kneeling 3-Way Ankle Mobilization
The 3-Way Ankle Mobilization is a great drill for addressing joint mobility restrictions that restrict the ankles ability to meaningfully move into dorsiflexion. But remember, we must first figure out what type of ankle mobility restriction we have. Heres a great article from our colleague and fellow DrJohnRusin.com expert Andrew Millett: 10 Exercises To Instantly Improve Ankle Mobility
#2 Push-Up Position Dorsiflexion Rockbacks
The foot/ankle is the first thing that makes contact with the ground, so it is really important for its ability to absorb force. Failure for the foot/ankle to absorb force efficiently can put excess stress on the knee joint over time which can cause some irritation. Improve your ankle mobility and your knee will thank you in the long run.
#3 Glute Bridge Variations
Why Should I See A Pain Management Specialist
Pain management is an important part of any treatment plan, both for lessening discomfort and aiding in recovery. Pain management specialists understand the full range of pain relief options and how to use these options in combination. Treatments done as part of a comprehensive, multimodal plan may help even if each treatment does not seem to make a difference when used in isolation.
Pain management specialists work with patients to help diagnose pain and treat it safely and effectively with as few side effects as possible. These treatments do not have to involve medication. In fact, pain management is generally more successful when a comprehensive approach is used, with or without medications.
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How Effective Are Glucosamine And Chondroitin Supplements For Knee Pain
Prevention: Taking glucosamine supplements can preserve joint health by reducing cartilage breakdown, and maintaining the production of collagen in athletes involved in various sports, including soccer and bicycle racing.
Sports injuries: Research involving 106 athletes with an acute knee injury found that taking glucosamine , significantly improve knee bending compared with placebo. These improvements in mobility took 28 days to develop, as it takes time for damaged tissues to use these building blocks, and for them to enhance repair processes, so dont expect immediate results.
Osteoarthritis: Data from 54 studies, involving 16,427 people with knee pain due to osteoarthritis, found that glucosamine and chondroitin were more effective than placebo in pain relief and improving joint function. Both glucosamine and chondroitin reduced joint space narrowing, as seen on X-rays, to indicate that the progression of osteoarthritis was significantly slowed.
Facts You Should Know About Knee Pain
- Knee pain is a common problem with many causes, from acute injuries to complications of medical conditions.
- Knee pain can be localized to a specific area of the knee or be diffuse throughout the knee.
- Knee pain is often accompanied by physical restriction.
- A thorough physical examination will usually establish the diagnosis of knee pain.
- The treatment of knee pain depends on the underlying cause.
- The prognosis of knee pain, even severe knee pain, is usually good although it might require surgery or other interventions.
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Natural Treatments For Knee Pain Relief And Prevention
1. Exercise and Proper Time to Recover
Weak muscles and stiffness are two of the leading problems associated with knee injuries. So while exercise is important for keeping your knees healthy, you also need to rest enough and give your body time to heal. Some people will need to take a break from most exercise or several weeks to heal a damaged knee, or at least limit high-impact activities for a period of time. Before trying more drastic treatments, see if taking a few days off from your usual exercise helps. If you see improvements with rest, then you should plan to decrease your mileage/length of workout when you return.
To protect yourself from injury, always warm up lightly and stretch before exercise. Before engaging in running, biking or another knee-bending exercise, walk a quarter- to a half-mile. After your exercise, be sure to stretch again and then to give yourself enough time to recover properly, at least 12 days .
Doing low-impact exercises is best for people with chronic knee pain or conditions that affect the joints. Examples of low impact workouts include:
- Activities that involve repetitive movements of the legs
- High-impact sports
2. Physical Therapy
3. Good Footwear, Insoles and if Needed, a Knee Brace
In general, people with knee pain should try to avoid wearing sandals, flip flops, Crocs, boat shoes, high heels and boots. These types of shoes are not very supportive and can aggravate back, knee or hip pain.
4. Foam Rolling
- Omega-3 fatty acids
How To Use Pain Medications Properly
There are two types of over-the-counter pain medications that can be used for osteoarthritis. Acetaminophen is a pain reliever but not an anti-inflammatory. It may help with mild knee pain.
NSAIDs can be more effective because they both relieve pain and reduce inflammation. However, they come with potential side effects and risks. NSAIDs can irritate the lining of the stomach, which may lead to an ulcer or other stomach problems. They also can impair kidney function. Some NSAIDs can increase blood pressure. And theyve been linked to an increased risk for heart disease.
Because of the risks, Dr. Day cautions against using NSAIDs regularly over long periods of time. Instead, she uses NSAIDs for her patients in two ways. First, people who have a flare-up of pain can take them regularly for three to five days and then stop. Second, they can be used over the long term, but only occasionally, maybe a couple of times a week as needed.
If youre taking NSAIDs several times a day for long periods of time, Dr. Day advises reducing their use by maximizing the other treatment strategies. She also suggests trying a topical NSAID, such as diclofenac , which has fewer potential side effects.
Opioid pain relievers are discouraged for long-term treatment of chronic knee pain. The milder narcotic tramadol might be appropriate for occasional use in some people, says Dr. Day.
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The Role Physical Therapy Plays In The Process
Physical therapy is definitely beneficial. Improving range of motion and strength in the knee are helpful, but physical therapy for knee osteoarthritis has a large focus on strengthening the hips, explains Dr. Day.
Weak hips put more pressure on the knees. If your hips are strong, when you get up from a chair or go up and down stairs your knees have less work to do.
Everyone with knee osteoarthritis should consult a physical therapist, according to Dr. Day. Not only will you be taught the right kinds of exercises, a physical therapist also provides valuable instruction about using assistive devices and modifying activities to reduce pain.
Protection Rest Ice Compression And Elevation
Rest, ice, compression, and elevation may help treat mild knee pain that results from a soft tissue injury, such as a sprain.
Protection refers to protecting the knee from further injury, for example, by taking a break from the activity that caused it.
Rest can reduce the risk of further injury and give tissues time to heal. However, stopping all movement is not advisable, as this can lead to stiffness and, in time, muscle weakness.
Ice can help reduce swelling and inflammation. It should be wrapped in a cloth and applied for 20 minutes several times on the first day of injury. Never put ice directly the skin, as this can lead to further damage.
Compression with a knee support, for example, can increase comfort levels. The support or bandage should be firm but not tight.
Elevation, or keeping the leg raised, will encourage circulation and reduce swelling. Ideally, the knee should be above the level of the heart.
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What Can I Do For My Joint Pain
This is a common question I hear almost every day. Osteoarthritis, also known as degenerative joint disease, is very common in people especially over the age of 30.
The joints that are most commonly affected include the ones that take the most weight bearing and abuse such as the following:
This is also called wear and tear arthritis.
People who have sustained sports injuries are at greater risk of degeneration of the joint. Common every day activities do produce some wear and tear on the joints particularly if the body weight is increased. Even a 5 pound weight gain transmits five times which would equal 25 extra pounds of pressure to the lower body joints, so maintaining a normal body weight is very important.
Stretching and strengthening exercises are very important as they stabilize the joints. Since the tendons, joints and cartilage do not have any direct blood vessels, movement In the form of activity, specifically aerobic exercise that gets the heart rate up is important for diffusing both oxygen and nutrients into the joints.
Collagen Supplements For Knee Pain
While glucosamine and chondroitin give cartilage its flexibility and resilience, it gets its strength from a strong, fibrous protein known as type II collagen. Collagen is a protein composed of long chains of amino acids. Every third amino acid is glycine, with proline, hydroxyproline and hydroxylysine appearing in between. These last two amino acids are not found in any other human proteins.
Long chains of collagen come together in threes. Hydroxyproline, which needs vitamin C for its synthesis, has a unique shape which allows collagen fibres to twist around each other and form long triple strands for extra strength
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What Causes Knee Pain
Your knee joint is made of bone, cartilage, ligaments, and fluid. Muscles and tendons help the knee joint move. When any of these structures is damaged, you have knee problems. These are some of the more common causes of knee pain:
- Osteoarthritis. The cartilage in the knee gradually wears away.
- Rheumatoid arthritis. The knee may become swollen and cartilage may be destroyed.
- Ligament injuries. Anterior cruciate ligament injuries usually result from a sudden twisting motion. Injuries to the posterior cruciate ligament are usually caused by a direct impact, like impact from a car accident or sports activities.
- Tendon injuries. These can range from inflammation to a tear, most likely from overuse in sports or from a fall.
- Cartilage injuries and disorders. Injury, overuse, muscle weakness, or misalignment of the knee can soften the cartilage of the kneecap, or a blow to the knee may tear off a piece of cartilage.
- Broken kneecap. The small, round bone that sits over the front of your knee joint breaks, usually as the result of a fall or a direct blow to the knee.