Are You Living With Hip or Knee Pain? Physical Therapy Can Help
There are so many causes of hip and knee pain, from excess weight to sports injuries, advancing age to repetitive motion injuries. Whatever the cause of your hip and/or knee pain, if you are experiencing it regularly you need to find a way to manage it.
Many people use medications like anti-inflammatories to minimize their discomfort. However, these medications have potential side effects, so it can be helpful to find other ways to relieve your pain. Physical therapy may be the solution you are looking for.
The many benefits of physical therapy
Once our physical therapist has isolated the underlying cause of your hip or knee pain, we can prescribe techniques to help you start feeling – and moving – more like your old self.
Physical therapy for hip or knee pain may start with passive exercises, in which we move the afflicted joint for you to increase its pain-free range of motion.
Exercises that reduce the amount of weight on the joints can also be extremely helpful. For instance, we may recommend swimming or “water walking” as a way to exercise the hips and knees without also forcing them to bear your full weight.
Other types of exercises can also help you overcome your hip or knee pain while improving joint function. Strengthening exercises help by reinforcing the muscles and connective tissues that serve the joint. Corrective exercises and neuromuscular re-education can help you maintain a straighter, more symmetrical posture.
Last but not least, physical therapy offers a variety of helpful modalities beyond exercise. We may treat your joint pain with heat, ice, manual techniques, and more!
Physical therapy over prescription drugs
If your doctor has prescribed you pain relievers it is best to follow the guidance of your doctor.
However, you are welcome to discuss physical therapy with your doctor as well.
If you find that your pain level has decreased through physical therapy, you can discuss reducing your pain reliever usage with your primary physician.
Physical therapy for hip and knee pain relief
You may discover pain relief when you are going through your physical therapy treatments, but what about when you go home?
A major goal of physical therapy is to heal your injuries in the long-term. The various exercises and treatments physical therapist’s use with you will steadily improve your condition so that you experience less pain on a daily basis.
As your body gets stronger and more mobile, you are likely to experience less pain in your hips and knees.
What can I expect from my treatment plan?
If your doctor has told you to take pain relievers every day for your hip and/or knee pain, you should follow your doctor’s recommendations. But it also cannot hurt to ask about alternatives like physical therapy.
Working with a physical therapist can help reduce or eliminate your pain in a variety of ways, including:
- Ultrasound therapy. Ultrasound is used by physical therapists to apply heat deeper in your soft tissues to provide pain relief. The heat can improve circulation and aid in healing, which can ultimately reduce the pain you experience day to day.
- Heat and ice therapy. Heat can be used to improve your mobility and decrease the amount of pain you are experiencing so that you can move more freely. Ice can also be used to lessen pain from your hip and/or knee as well as to reduce inflammation.
- Exercises to improve mobility and flexibility. Often hip and knee pain can lead to loss of mobility and flexibility – which then increases the wear on your joints and leads to even more pain. Physical therapists can take you through exercises to improve your mobility and flexibility so that you can move your limbs and joints in the fullest range of motion that is available based on your body and circumstances.
- Exercises to increase your strength. Loss of muscular strength can contribute significantly to hip and knee pain because the weaker your muscles get, the more stress is put on your joints. Physical therapy centers around specific exercises designed to target various muscles and strengthen them so that they better support your joints.
- Identify the causes of your hip and knee pain. There may be one or several reasons why you are experiencing hip and knee pain. A physical therapist can examine your movement to help identify things that are contributing to your pain, such as poor posture, unhealthy walking patterns, or unhealthy movement patterns at work. Once they identify these kinds of issues, physical therapists can tell you how to correct them.
Find relief today!
Please contact MCH PT today to schedule an appointment with a physical therapist for your hip and knee pain.
We are standing by to assist you!