Chronic joint pain is the most common and enfeebling medical condition affecting millions of people across the globe. Joint pain basically refers to aches, discomfort and soreness in any of the body’s joints. Main joints of your body include knees, shoulders, elbows and hips. If your pain lasts for more than six months, it’s a chronic pain.
Arthritis is the most common cause of chronic joint pain which can last for a lifetime. The other causes of joint pain can be the age factor, illness or an injury. Now, joint pain can even affect the function of a joint resulting in an individual’s incapacity to undertake daily activities such as walking, household chores, etc.
Different symptoms and signs linked with joint pain-
- Joint tenderness
- Joint stiffness
- Joint swelling
- Limited joint movement
- Weakness in the affected area
What Causes Chronic Joint Pain?
There are different causes of Joint pain. Below we have enlisted the most common causes that affect most Americans in different ways.
Osteoarthritis is known to be the most common form of arthritis,influencing millions of people across the world. This medical condition happens when the protective cartilage that cushions the ends of the bones weakens with time. Osteoarthritis mainly affects joints in your hips, knees, spine and hands. The symptoms of this disorder can be managed with a lifestyle change including, walking, healthy diet, etc.
Septic Arthritis is another debilitating and painful joint pain that can come from germs that travel through your bloodstream from other parts of the body. It can also occur due to a penetrating injury including a trauma or animal bite, that basically lets the germs enter in the joint.
This disorder usually affects infants or older people affecting joints like hips, knees, shoulders, etc. Its symptoms include extreme discomfort, pain and trouble working with the affected joint. You should visit a doctor if you experience sudden severe pain in your joints.
It’s a common and complex form of arthritis with the potential to affect anyone. It’s recognized with sudden attacks of pain, swelling, and redness in one or more joints. The pain sometimes can be so severe that the weight of a bedsheet on it seems intolerable.
Symptoms of gout include intense burning pain, discomfort, redness, and limited range of motion. High levels of uric acid in your body makes you prone to have gout. Some lifestyle changes, including a healthy diet, can help reduce the production of uric acid.
Pseudogout is another form of arthritis characterized by sudden painful sensations in one or two joints, mainly the knee. In some of the cases, patients don’t suffer any symptoms while the common signs include swelling, pain and tenderness. Following factors increase your risk of getting the disorder –
- Older age
- Genetic Disorder
- Mineral imbalances in the body
- Joint Trauma
- Other medical conditions can also increase the chances.
- Viral infections, fever, allergies can also be the cause of increased pain.
- Different injuries like sprains or broken bones might also be the cause of chronic joint pain.
- Tendinitis is a painful medical condition where the connective tissues between your muscles and bones get swollen. The disorder is also known as tendonitis and majorly affects the elbow, knee, shoulder, hip, Achilles tendon and base of the thumb.
What Are the Treatment Options?
Joint pains can be disturbing causing changes in everyday mood and hence affecting your quality of life. Though joint pain can be mild and go away on its own, some of the common treatment options include medications, physical therapy, and other lifestyle changes.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin, celecoxib, ibuprofen, etc are effective for pain-management and to help prevent joint damage. Their non sedative properties make them the most commonly used drugs for the treatment of joint pain. NSAIDs come with some side-effects, so smart consumption of the drugs is necessary. If you go through unbearable pain, consult your doctor to get the right treatment.
Physical therapy is a natural way to ease your joint pain. A therapist will help you to strengthen the muscles around the joint, stabilize the joint and relieve pain. You can also try other forms of exercises such as swimming and walking, both are known as the best practices to relieve joint pain. Following therapy and other exercises with consistency will bring noticeable changes in your chronic joint pain.
Other Ways to Manage Joint Pain
Maintain a Healthy Weight
Maintaining a healthy weight supports the betterment of your overall health. With joint pain issues also, weight is an important factor that can affect the intensity of pain. Overweight people can have more disturbing joint pain as excessive weight can put pressure on the weight-bearing joints, causing intense pain. Regular exercising, a healthy diet and a positive attitude is all you need to lose weight and manage joint pain.
Try Some Lifestyle Changes
Other lifestyle changes include taking a nutritious diet, regular physical activity, indulging in stretching exercises. All of these can help you manage your chronic joint pain well. Yoga is probably the most safest and effective way of dealing with joint pain as deep stretching asanas works towards the pain-relief. Especially for people who suffer from lower back pain. You can also indulge in a dance class, or any other sort of physical activity that you can do on a regular basis.
Last but not the least, having a positive mindset towards your health and life, as a whole, makes it easy to deal with different kinds of problems. Especially with disorders like chronic joint pain, apart from medications and all, the urge to get better health should be on your mind 24/7.
To sum up the entire discussion, it can be concluded that chronic joint pain is indeed a distressing medical condition affecting different areas of an individual’s life. That is why, having a proper knowledge of one’s type and the possible treatments is necessary. If you suffer from any sort of joint pain, do consult your primary doctor and get it checked to begin the treatment.