stress or overuse and degeneration from aging are some common causes
of your knee pain.
of the patella, or patellofemoral pain syndrome or Runner's Knee,
is a general term that refers to pain arising between your patella
and the underlying thighbone (femur).
common in young adults, especially those who have a slight misalignment
of the kneecap; in athletes; and in older adults, who usually develop
the condition as a result of arthritis of the kneecap.
treatments for this kind of knee pain are:
a break from your normal activities reduces repetitive strain on your
knee, gives the injury time to heal and helps prevent further damage.
A day or two of rest may be all that's needed for minor injuries.
More severe damage is likely to need a longer recovery time.
gravity drains away fluids that might otherwise accumulate after an
injury, elevating your knee can help reduce swelling. Try propping
your injured leg on pillows or sitting in a recliner.
for most acute injuries, ice reduces both pain and inflammation. Some
doctors recommend applying ice to your injured knee for about 20 minutes
three times a day. A bag of frozen peas works well because it covers
your whole knee. You can also use an ice pack wrapped in thin fabric
to protect your skin. Although ice therapy is generally safe and effective,
don't leave ice on longer than recommended because of the risk of
damage to your nerves and skin.
substances, found naturally in cartilage, are also available as over-the-counter
dietary supplements. Both may help relieve the pain of osteoarthritis
of the knee in some people. One U.S. government-sponsored study found
that although glucosamine and chondroitin aren't effective for everyone,
a subgroup of people with moderate to severe arthritis pain reported
relief from taking this combination supplement.
suggests that acupuncture may help relieve pain for some people. Traditional
beliefs hold that acupuncture needles, accurately placed along meridians
in the body, help to unblock the vital life force known as qi (pronounced
"che"). Most medical experts believe that pain relief from
acupuncture comes from the release of neurotransmitters and endorphins.
If you'd like to try acupuncture, ask your doctor for a recommendation
or check with the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture
and Oriental Medicine or the American Academy of Medical Acupuncture,
which is an organization of physicians with additional training in
smart about exercise.
have osteoarthritis, chronic knee pain or recurring injuries, you
may need to change the way you exercise. That doesn't mean you have
to stop being active, but it does mean being smart about when and
how you work out. If your knees ache after jogging or playing basketball
or other sports that give your joints a real pounding, 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.
involved in a sport or activity on a regular basis, it's important
to have the best technique possible so that proper movement patterns
the goal of physical therapy is to strengthen the muscles around your
knee and help you regain knee stability. Depending on your injury,
training is likely to focus on the muscles in the back of your thigh
(hamstrings), the muscles on the front of your thigh (quadriceps),
and your calf, hip and ankle. You can do some exercises at home. Others
require the use of weight machines, exercise bicycles or treadmills,
which may mean visits to an athletic club, fitness center or clinic.