At Phoenix Regenerative Medicine in Scottsdale, AZ, we understand how debilitating joint pain can be. Even pain in just one joint can affect multiple parts of your body. Knee pain can affect your gait, which can affect your feet, hips, and lower back, for instance. Whether it’s caused by osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, or something else, your symptoms can improve. Today, we’re looking at ways you can achieve joint pain relief.
How Can You Treat Joint Pain?
If your joint pain is caused by knee osteoarthritis, viscosupplementation injections may be a great way for you to achieve joint pain relief. This treatment involves injecting a hyaluronic acid-based gel into the affected knee. Most of the time, people can enjoy two to three months of joint pain relief after receiving these injections. However, in some cases, relief can be enjoyed for six to 12 months.
Depending on the severity of your joint pain, you may need two to five injection sessions to achieve optimal relief. If multiple injection sessions are necessary, they will be scheduled over the course of multiple weeks.
PRP therapy is another highly effective way to achieve joint pain relief. It involves drawing a bit of blood from your dominant arm, separating it in a centrifuge into its components, and creating a healing solution of your plasma and platelets. Once the solution is created, it will be injected into the affected joint. Some of the benefits you can expect from this treatment include inflammation reduction, pain reduction, and improved joint lubrication.
In some cases, weight loss can help treat joint pain. This technique is particularly effective if you have osteoarthritis of the knee. Just make sure that you talk to your primary care physician about how you can lose weight safely and effectively. Most of your weight loss will probably come from reducing your daily caloric intake. However, you may be able to achieve some of your weight loss through exercise.
Individual cases vary, but it is generally considered safe to lose up to 1% of your body weight per week. For instance, if you weigh 160 pounds, it will probably be safe for you to lose up to 1.6 pounds in the first week of your weight loss journey.
Some people find that changing their diet eases their joint pain. If you are experiencing joint pain, you should strongly consider adding more cold-water fish to your diet. Salmon, tuna, trout, halibut, and sardines are all very high in omega-3s, a polyunsaturated fatty acid. Omega-3s provide a number of benefits, including reducing the number of inflammatory proteins in your body that cause joint pain. Omega-3s can also be found in:
- Pine nuts
- Chia seeds
- Olive oil
Colorful fruits should also be abundant in your diet. Examples of good fruits to incorporate into your diet include blueberries, pineapples, and apples. Blueberries are great because they are high in anthocyanins, a flavonoid that helps your body shut off inflammatory responses. Pineapples are great for people with joint pain due to a high bromelain content. This nutrient is highly effective for the reduction of rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis pain.
A physical therapist can help you create an exercise plan that will help you restore strength, but you don’t necessarily need to go to a physical therapist for advice. There’s a good chance that regular moderate exercise, static stretches, and gentle dynamic stretches can improve your range of motion. One of the best exercises for joint pain is water aerobics. The most compelling benefit of water aerobics is that it is low-impact. Other low-impact exercises include:
- Indoor rowing
- Cycling or spinning
If you suffer from knee pain, a good exercise to try would be to lie on your back with one leg straight and the other leg bent. The muscles in your straightened leg should be contracted, and you should lift it until it is level with your bent knee. Then, it should be lowered slowly. You should perform ten repetitions, then repeat on the other side. You should perform 60 repetitions per day.
Analgesics may ease joint pain temporarily, but they are not a safe long-term solution. Some of the most common medications taken for joint pain include acetaminophen and ibuprofen. The primary reason you should not consider analgesics a long-term solution is that kidney disease, liver disease, and stomach ulcers can occur if you take too much of these medications for too long. Furthermore, their efficacy may wane with chronic use.
Certain dietary supplements are also effective for the treatment of joint pain. Some people achieve pain relief by taking a daily glucosamine supplement. Others don’t notice any pain reduction unless they take a supplement containing glucosamine, chondroitin, and MSM. Other dietary supplements that may relieve joint pain include fish oil supplements and green tea extract supplements.
Topical treatments are another way you can achieve relief from your joint pain. If you have tried over-the-counter topical medications, like Bengay or Icy Hot, consider talking to your doctor about a prescription cream or ointment designed to provide joint pain relief.
Many people suffering from joint pain can also benefit from supportive aids. For instance, if you are experiencing foot pain, you may benefit from getting an orthotic device in your shoe or shoes. If you have knee pain, or if you don’t want to walk with a cane, consider wearing a knee brace to help ease the pain.
Take a Hot Bath
Taking a hot bath is another effective way to combat joint pain. Similarly, you may experience a lot of relief if you apply a heating pad or cold compress to the affected area for 15 minutes at a time when pain or other discomfort flares up.
When Should I See a Doctor About My Joint Pain?
The right time to see a doctor about your joint pain is when your joint problems start to affect your quality of life seriously. At first, you may be able to manage your pain with over-the-counter NSAIDs. However, if your condition worsens to the point that you lose a significant amount of range of motion in the affected joint, you should schedule an appointment with a doctor. You also should strongly consider scheduling a doctor’s appointment if you:
- Have a fever
- Are losing weight unintentionally
- Feel your independence is being affected
What Causes Joint Pain?
There are a number of potential causes of joint pain. Some of the most common causes of joint pain are osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and gout. Osteoarthritis, sometimes referred to as wear and tear disease, occurs when the cartilage that prevents two bones from rubbing against each other wears away. Rheumatoid arthritis causes joint pain and swelling and usually affects the fingers and wrists. If left untreated, it can cause joint deformities.
Gout causes joint pain and swelling when the affected joint accumulates crystals. Most of the time, this condition affects the big toe. Bursitis is another common cause of joint pain. It usually affects the shoulder, elbow, knee, or hip due to overuse.
Who Is At Risk of Developing Joint Pain?
Joint pain can happen to anyone. However, some people are more at risk of developing joint pain than others. Some of the people who are most at risk are those who are overweight or obese, have poor health, or suffer from certain mood disorders. Specifically, you are more likely to suffer from joint pain if you suffer from anxiety or depression or live with chronic stress.
Your career can also increase your risk of developing joint pain. Data entry specialists often experience joint pain in their fingers and wrists. Painters often experience joint pain in their wrists, elbows, and shoulders. People who work in factories or warehouses or deliver packages daily also have a high risk of developing joint pain. Furthermore, you have an increased risk of developing joint pain if you have a history of joint injuries.
Learn More About Joint Pain Relief Today
There are a number of ways you can achieve joint pain relief, including getting viscosupplementation injections, receiving PRP therapy, and taking supplements designed to support healthy joints. Contact us now at Phoenix Regenerative Medicine in Scottsdale, AZ to schedule an appointment and find out how we can help you treat your joint pain and restore your quality of life.