Hip and Knee Pain Relief
Do sharp pains in your hip make it difficult to get up in the mornings, move about during the day, and lie back down at night? Do your knees feel unstable and painful, as if they may buckle underneath you without warning? Hip and knee pains can seriously interfere with your life, especially if you are experiencing both. Whichever you may be experiencing, physical therapy can help get to the root of your problem safely and comfortably, without the need for harmful drugs and reducing the need for surgery. Contact Merrimack Valley Physical Therapy today to schedule your appointment with one of our physical therapists!
Why do I have hip joint pain and/or knee pain?
Hip and knee pain can be experienced together or separately. Your hip is a ball-and-socket joint that works to support the weight of your upper body, relying on multiple muscles and tissues to keep it mobile yet stable so it can function properly. Your knee is a hinge joint, confined to forward-and-backward motions. Individually, your knees support more weight than the hips, providing you with stability as you move throughout the course of your day.
The pain felt in the hips and/or knees may originate in the joints themselves, but it may also be a result of an underlying condition in another part of the body. For example, your hips and knees are part of the same kinetic chain, meaning they make up a combination of weight-bearing joints that function together in connecting your trunk to your ankles. Therefore, a problem with your hip joint may refer pain to the knee joint and altered walking from knee pain can injure the hip. If one part of the kinetic chain is out of balance, stress and deterioration may be placed on another.
What causes hip and knee pain?
The hips and knees contain similar structures; therefore, they can be subject to similar stresses. Many times, the hips and knees suffer the same diseases, disorders, and injuries. For example, overuse injuries such as tendinitis and chronic muscle strain are common in both the hips and knees because both joints are constantly in use. They are also both subject to acute injuries, such as sprains, strains, and dislocation.
How will physical therapy relieve my hip and knee pain?
The physical therapy treatments at Merrimack Valley Physical Therapy can help to greatly reduce your hip and knee pain. In many cases, it can even relieve it all together, sparing you the need for medication or surgical intervention. Our physical therapist will examine your hip and/or knee for signs of misalignment or structural damage, in addition to examining your stance, posture, gait, and range of motion. After your physical exam is complete, your physical therapists will prescribe a physical therapy plan for you. The plan is aimed at relieving your symptoms and addressing any findings to maximize your ability to return to your prior level of functioning.
Your treatment plan will include targeted exercises designed for relieving joint pain and stabilizing weak hip and/or knee tissues. The exercises may vary depending on your condition. For example, research has demonstrated that those suffering from kneecap (patella) pain tend to respond better to exercises that focus on strengthening both the hips and knees, rather than just focusing on the knees alone.
You may also be given exercises designed to strengthen the core, including your lower back muscle groups, lower abdominal muscle groups, and/or pelvic muscles. Core exercises are aimed at improving your posture and equalizing the weight load on both sides of your body. Additional specialized treatments may also be added as our physical therapists deem fit, such as taping, laser therapy, massage therapy, or other soft tissue treatments that relieve pain and promote the healing of damaged hip and/or knee tissues.