Your knee hurts, but what is wrong? To actually determine the source of your pain you will need to see your physician for a complete diagnosis. In this article, you will learn the most common symptoms to three of the most common sources of knee pain to educate you the possible source of pain for your knee pain.
The achy stiff knee
Many people will experience an aching and stiffness in their knee; this feeling is more pronounced after sitting for an extended period of inactivity. Once moving, their knees will feel better as they “warm-Up.” Additionally, they might feel that the knee has a sandpaper or crunchy sound when bending. Does this look like you? Well, those are signs of Osteoarthritis of the Knee which is the result of the loss of the protective tissues (Meniscus, Articular Cartilage, and Synovial Membrane) in the knee joint. With the protection gone and the joint space narrowing the bones will hit causing inflammation resulting in the aching, the stiffness, and the grinding.
Catching, Locking, with Sharp pain
The common feelings are;
- A sharp pain as the knee seems to lock in place.
- A feeling of the knee giving out that is often painful.
- An inability to do a deep squat especially with a twist.
- There is a pain when you touch right at the top of the joint line of the bone.
These are all signs of one of the most common orthopedic injuries Meniscus Tears. The meniscus is two horseshoe shaped tissues that work as a shock absorber for your knee. Most people will associate a Meniscus injury to their favorite player in fantasy football. However, more than 30% of the people of 50 will experience a meniscus tear due to degeneration of the tissue. The great news is many of these injuries can resolve without surgery with the right treatment.
Hurts while running and jumping
Just started a new running regimen prepping for the big race or just joined a new basketball team? Now your knee hurts after every activity. Climbing stairs are particularly painful and find yourself stiff legging up to the second floor. With each step, the pain comes from the front of the knee below the knee cap. These are all symptoms of Patella Tendonitis often called runners knee. The Patella tendon covers the Patella and connects to the top of the tibia. A tendonitis of any form is the micro tearing of the tendon that leads to inflammation and pain. Patella Tendonitis is usually the result of overuse (new use), muscle strength misalignment, or a combination of both. A weak quad and strong hamstring are the most common muscle miss-alignment associated with Patella Tendonitis.
Depending on the injury the treatment goal might be different. For instance, you will not heal and recover from Knee OA, but you can slow the progression and reduce the pain. While with Patella Tendonitis you can fully recover from that injury. Even though the goals of these treatments are different, the core non-surgical treatments are the same.
Step One: Functional Rest
First, you need to rest, and since we are active people and need to stay active, I prefer functional rest. This means mechanically protecting the injury with a brace, so you are supporting the joint to reduce the chance of exacerbating the injury.
Step Two: Reduce Inflammation
Inflammation is a normal response to injury. However, that inflammation is a source of pain and will reduce your range of motion. The combination of cold and compression is proven to reduce inflammation in orthopedic injuries.
Step Three: Regain Strength and Symmetric Motion
Muscle imbalance and different range of motion will create an asymmetry which put your bodies biomechanics out of alignment. To recover and to reduce reoccurrence and progression it is important to spend five minutes a day regaining the necessary strength and flexibility.
The SWEET SPOT
One of the three steps will help. However, like soup with one ingredient, it simply will not taste as good. By adding the combination of treatments consistently, you will maximize your results.
Want to learn more about these solutions and how you can get started? Go to www.painsandstrains.com.