Knee osteoarthritis, which causes decreased joint range of motion (JROM) and muscle flexibility, is one of the most common causes of knee discomfort and functional limitations in the elderly.
Joint discomfort and dysfunction are caused by two key factors: muscle weakness and poor flexibility. Joint function is affected by a lack of muscle flexibility.
Early-stage arthritis patients may find that moving the affected portions of their bodies is more difficult than before. Loss of flexibility, also known as range of motion loss, can be exacerbated by joint stiffness and pain.
The range of motion of your joints refers to how far you can move them in their natural patterns. The range of motion of your knee, for example, is fully bending and extending it. Limited range of motion refers to a limitation in the typical range of motion in any of the joints.
Joint range of motion reduces with age, but it can also be caused by a variety of illnesses. You may not be able to bend your knee as far if you have arthritis. Flexibility loss is usually a slow and steady process.
Stretching and exercise on a regular basis can help to enhance flexibility and overall health by keeping the joint moving. Examples of these exercises include heel slides and stretching with a yoga strap.
Your physical therapist will explain the benefits of exercise, the importance of increasing overall daily physical activity, and how to protect the hip joint while walking, sitting, climbing stairs, and standing, carrying loads, and lying in bed.
Passive movement to increase joint flexibility: Hip OA and the surgery that comes with can be a lot painful and restrictive. But staying under restriction of movements can lead to other unwanted, unwelcome problems. Your physical therapist will choose specific activities and provide with treatment to restore normal movement in the leg and hip. This might begin with passive motion in which you can gently move your leg and hip joint and further progress to active stretches and manual therapy techniques that gently stretch your joint and the muscles around it.
Use of assistive device: As the name suggest they are for your support. It stops you from being dependent on anyone else. It minimises your risk of fall because of imbalance and fractures because of falls. It can be indicative sign for people around you to be more careful and maintain a safe distance while passing by on the road.
Exercise therapy: It’s an effective treatment modality for hip OA. Specific exercise for your hip joint can increase risk of motion and flexibility as well as strengthen the muscles of the hip and leg. Physiotherapist with the patient can develop an individualized, customized exercise programme that meets the needs and lifestyle of the patient. The benefits the patient can get are self-management of hip osteoarthritis.
Hydrotherapy: Aquatic exercises have proved to be beneficial for some people with hip OA. It is usually taken under water with the water temperature of 32-360C. The water is believed to reduce pain and stiffness of the musculoskeletal system and cause muscle relaxation.
Stance and balance: Physiotherapy improves the patient’s stance and balance with rigorous exercise as advised by the physiotherapist. A day–to–day work out with your therapist makes you active, independent to carry out daily activities, improve in stamina and flexibility and strengthen your joints.
Joint pain is a widely felt ailment, with millions of Indians suffering from this often-incapacitating condition. The pain if for a longer time can be frustrating and debilitating causing immobility.
Does swelling accompany joint pain?
In medical terms joint pain is called arthralgia. This is very different from arthritis, which means inflammation of the joint, which causes warmth, redness and/or swelling of the joint along with pain. A joint can be painful without being swollen or inflamed, or it can be both painful and inflamed.
Depending on the activity and stress, the knee can support 2-5 times a person’s body weight. Chronic knee pain usually affects middle-aged and older adults, has a deleterious effect on daily function and quality of life.
Why do only some people have joint pain?
There are some more serious disorders that may cause joint pain. The possible causes depend on age, injury or repeated stress. The reasons for joint pain in children are different to the possible causes for adults. Most people generally mistake the achy joints that come with arthritis as normal everyday pain.
Causes of knee pain
Chronic conditions –
- Osteoarthritis (OA)
- Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
Acute knee injury – cartilage or ligament injuries
- Vitamin D deficiency
- General body infection
Few food items that may trigger knee pain –
- Excess salt
- Milk and dairy products
- Fried and processed food
Because joint pain can be a symptom of a more serious condition, you don’t want to pass it off as an everyday nuisance. Most causes of joint pain are harmless and resolve without any long-term problems. However, some causes of joint pain like arthritis require treatment for a long time and cause long-term joint problems.