Knee Stiffness And Long Working Hours! Answering The W’s!

July 23, 2021 in Knee Osteoarthritis

The most common complain among elderly and those who lift heavy weights is tightness or stiffness of the knee. It is one of the classic symptoms associated with arthritis.

What is Knee stiffness?

Knee stiffness is basically the increased resistance developed in movement by the muscles and other soft tissues of the joint. It can happen in one or both knees. People with knee stiffness find it difficult to bend their knee.

Why does the Knee get stiff or tight?

It could occur due to poor flexibility of muscles, osteoarthritis (OA), injury to ligament, injury to cartilage, infection. In RA, the internal swelling causes knee stiffness and pain. Bone spurs and friction between bones is the reason for stiffness in OA patients. Visible swelling may or may not be there.

When does stiffness occur?

Stiffness usually develops after sitting or prolonged rest. Sedentary lifestyle such as lack of physical exercise or a desk-job may contribute to knee stiffness. It is also a very common complaint seen few days after heavy weight-lifting in the gym. It commonly loosens up in less than 30 minutes, and this is known as gelling. This short duration of stiffness is seen in the morning or is followed by periods of inactivity. But with disease progression stiffness may worsen over time including during rest or even at night.

Set of male and females weight lifters. Group of athletes lifting barbells, dumbbells and kettlebells. Sport concept. Vector illustration can be used for topics like weightlifting, gym, training

What can you do about stiff achy knees?

Once the level of stiffness is established an individual naturally looks for exercises or painkillers for managing it.

clock people doing exercise active break vector illustration

If you are at office or on your desk

  • Get up and stretch once every single hour
  • Adjust your chair
  • Stretch your legs while sitting
  • Try some straight leg lifts
  • Walk and talk

For severe cases, fitness walking, aerobic exercise, and strength training have all been reported to result in functional improvement of the knee. A 6 min walk distance has showed great improvement in knee stiffness.

Medicines That Can Help Relieve Pain In Hip Arthritis

July 9, 2021 in Hip Osteoarthritis

Topical gel/Creams: Arthritis creams help relieve joint pain when applied on the skin. They provide short term but effective relief. These creams tend to work best on the joints that are close to the surface of the skin. Many of the creams include ingredients like capsaicin, camphor, eucalyptus oil, salicylates etc. It reduces pain by blocking skin’s pain receptors.

NSAIDs: There is a variety of pain medicines available in market ranging from over the counter anti-inflammatory medicines like NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) to other prescription medicines, all help relieve hip pain. Relief from pain medicines is perfect for early stages of osteoarthritis. However relief is temporary and as the hip osteoarthritis progresses, it is less likely that pain killers will continue to bring you relief.

Injection – Steroids, Hyaluronic acid: Our body naturally makes hyaluronic acid. It’s a natural part of the fluid that helps lubricate and cushion your joints and keep them working smoothly. When they are affected with osteoarthritis the hyaluronic acid in the joints get thin. Hyaluronic acid injections add to your body’s natural supply. Doctor’s refer to the injection as ‘viscosupplementation’. This literally means they help the fluid in your joints.

Osteoarthritis can have a big impact even in small joint. OA can restrain from even bending down. Getting a shot of steroid directly into a sore joint can ease pain quickly. Steroids help fight inflammation, redness, pain and swelling in an injured or inflamed part of the body. Steroid injections are given at advanced stage of osteoarthritis. These steroid shots relieve pain faster than anti-inflammatory pills. When steroids are injected into a joint, their effect are mostly limited to that joint.

Opioids: Opioids should not be used as a first line treatment for either acute or chronic symptoms of hip or knee osteoarthritis. When other non-opioids treatment modalities have failed and patients cannot undergo joint replacement surgery, opioids use may be considered in an extremely small subset of patients. These patients who are prescribed opioids for non-operative treatment of osteoarthritis should be educated on the risks of prolonged opioid use including addiction and dependency. 

Yoga Stretches – A Good Answer To Hip Pain

July 2, 2021 in Hip Osteoarthritis

Yoga is a traditional form of stretching that is a good answer to many body pains. Yogasana has beneficial effects to more than one area in the body. In this post lets see through few Yoga stretches for hip arthritis –

Baddha Konasana (Butterfly Pose) –  It is extremely beneficial for opening various obstructions within the body particularly in the hip area. It creates full range of movement and creates a channel for the free passage for various fluids within the body. It provides relief from back and hip pain. Do this for a minute and take 30 seconds break repeat it at least 5 times.

 

Ardha Matsyendrasana: It is also known as sitting with half spinal twist. When the upper body gets twisted so does the spine. It stretches the shoulder, hips and neck and energizes the spinal column. It improves pain from sciatica and backache.

 

Ananda Balasana: As the name suggest it’s a happy baby pose. This position plays a vital role in stretching the entire body including hip joint and muscles. It increases overall balance and stamina but also increases blood circulation and tones the muscles around the hip. Doing it regularly relieves hip pain in no time. It has a characteristic ability to calm the mind and de-stress the body.

 

Viparita Karani: This is called leg up the wall pose. This posture is one of the relaxing poses that allow you to lie flat on the ground with your leg up without much twisting. Viparita Karani is one such beneficial yogasana that allows lymphatic drainage, evens out blood circulation and releases pressure from the back and hip. Regularly doing this yogasana opens up the hip muscles and combats any pain and tightness in the pelvic and hip area.

Daily practice of yogasana not only prevents stiffness in the joints and muscles of the hips but also improves the blood circulation in that area.