How to Treat Knee Pain
Knee pain is one of the most common reasons why people visit the doctor. Unfortunately, there are many different causes for pains in the knee. Some of these include chronic arthritis, muscle strains and sprains, muscle imbalances, ligament sprains, and even structural tears. On the other hand, there are also plenty of treatment options that could make people’s knee pain easier to deal with. It is important for everyone to discuss some of these treatment options with their doctor so that they can find the right way to care for their knee pain. What are a few of the ways that people can treat pain in their knees?
Over the Counter Treatment Options for Knee Pain
One of the first treatment options that people should try is over-the-counter pain medications. Pain in the knees often develops as a result of inflammation in the knees. This inflammation could cause swelling in the knees, leading to pain. Furthermore, this inflammation can also start to degrade the cartilage cushions within the bones of the knees, leading to knee pain. Some examples of over-the-counter treatment options include:
- Tylenol: Tylenol is perhaps the most popular anti-inflammatory pain medication in the world and is used to treat fevers, aches, and pain
- Motrin: Motrin is slightly stronger than Tylenol but is still frequently used in a way that is similar to Tylenol
- Naproxen: While not as common as Tylenol or Motrin, Naproxen is still an effective treatment option
Even though these medications are used over-the-counter, everyone should still follow the treatment dosing guidelines on the packaging. Overdoses of these medications could lead to kidney or liver failure.
Physical Therapy for Knee Pain
Another option for people struggling with knee pain is physical therapy. Physical therapy is typically reserved for people whose knee pain is more chronic in nature; however, there are many benefits that could come from working with a physical therapist. Some of the ways that an experienced physical therapist could help with someone’s knees include:
- Strengthening the muscles around the knee to provide added support, relieving stress on the bones
- Improving the flexibility of the muscles, ligaments, and tendons around the knee to reduce the risk of injury
- Increasing the range of motion of the knee to relieve stress and pain
Over time, physical therapy can help reduce chronic knee pain. Unfortunately, more invasive treatments are sometimes needed.
Surgery for Knee Pain
When medications and physical therapy fail, or when an acute injury leads to knee pain, surgery is sometimes required. While the idea of knee surgery may sound scary, it is sometimes a necessity. A trained orthopedic surgeon can perform a wide variety of procedures that could improve someone’s pain. Some of the operations involved could include:
- Ligament reconstruction following an ACL, MCL, LCL, PCL, or Meniscus Tear
- Surgery to repair bone fractures that might have occurred in and around the knee
- Arthroscopic knee surgery to remove scar tissue or bone spurs that might be causing chronic pain
After someone undergoes knee surgery, there could be a prolonged recovery process. This recovery process could actually include physical therapy that could help reduce the risk of reinjury. With time, many people make a full recovery following knee surgery.
Chiropractic Treatment of Knee Pain
In addition to the above treatment options, chiropractors also play an important role in the treatment of sore knees and knee pain. Structural adjustments can help alleviate muscle imbalances, bone misalignments and other common causes of knee pain. Those who have questions and concerns about their knee pain should seek the help of a trained medical professional.