So many of us have had knee pain at some point in our lives. Recently, The Washington Post offered some great information about knee pain, naming sources of pain and potential remedies.
Why does my knee hurt?
In The Washington Post piece by Jill Adams, she details her own knee pain (she’s a runner) and her process for figuring out why she was suddenly experiencing pain. Adams starts conservatively in treating her knee, as we all should — resting, elevating and icing are all good advice, at first, if an injury is in play. She points out that there are certainly times when self-treatment of knee pain is the best solution, but she also warns, that if your knee is red or you’re having trouble walking or feeling stable, you should see your physician. This is because there is potential for something other than a minor injury or basic inflammation at work here.
For example, she notes, if your joint pain is becoming chronic or extends to other parts of the body, you may want to get tested for Lyme Disease — especially, if you think you may have been exposed and/or spend a lot of time in the great outdoors.
Adams, calls out which injuries are on the more serious end of the spectrum and what to watch out for — some of the most serious being a fractured kneecap, a torn ACL, and a torn meniscus. Additionally, fluid build-up, decreased range of motion, or the inability to bear weight on the knee can signify a ligament issue.
Another source of knee pain (if not from a recent injury) could be from overuse or starting a new exercise regime too quickly. Runners and cyclists especially are susceptible to bursitis (swelling of the small sacs of fluid outside of the knee joint) and tendinitis (inflammation of the tendon).
How to treat knee pain
If you’re dealing with chronic knee pain — have no fear! There are a variety of natural solutions and tools that can help reduce inflammation and even prevent surgery. But remember to checked and cleared by your physician first to make sure there is no underlying disease or injury that might preclude you from trying these suggestions.
Whole Body Vibration is a great preventative because its purpose is to strengthen muscles including in and around the joints. Strengthened muscles result in better shock absorption and joint mobility. This form of exercise is safe and provides a pain-free way to increase strength for people with arthritis, but it also reduces inflammation, as shown by a positive influence on inflammatory markers in the blood. Whole Body Vibration is a low impact form of exercise and does not stress out the body like most forms of exercise.
This recent article on Hypervibe’s website, Safety of WBV Exercises After Hip or Knee Surgery, supports the safety and efficacy of using WBV after hip and knee surgery too. Lastly, there are entire workout routines designed specifically to strengthen and rehab the knee with Whole Body Vibration. Below is a program for knee injury prevention and correction. This program can be performed within the transitional phase of a rehabilitation program or on a regeneration day (low-stress recovery day).
Bodywork and Craniosacral Therapy are another means of assisting our body’s own healing process. Craniosacral is said to be safe and gentle enough to be performed the same day as surgery.
Here at the BQ Studio, Tara and Esther are both highly experienced massage therapists who can customize your treatments to assist in your body’s own natural healing and reduction of inflammation.
Call 503-233-9030 to make an appointment.
Diet can also have an impact on knee pain. Some of the supplements we carry, like Recovery by Seven Point 2 have been helpful in lowering inflammation within hours. When inflammation is reduced, pain reduction often follows. A good quality supportive supplement, intended to reduce inflammation can give the body an energy boost that helps to speed up the healing process.
Superfoods like turmeric, are incredibly helpful at lowering inflammation in the body and can be taken as a supplement or made into a yummy warm drink from the turmeric powder you may have on hand at home in your spice cupboard — we love this recipe!
Another great way to lower inflammation and help your muscles, is by making sure you have enough magnesium in your system. You can increase your magnesium levels by soaking in Epsom Salts and using topical magnesium products. Our favorite magnesium products are by Ancient Minerals.
Want to know more about the healing powers of magnesium? Find it here on our BQ Blog.