In his latest online article, Mr Cristian Nita gives us his insights into knee pain. He talks about when you should worry about knee pain, the leading causes, if over-exercising can cause knee pain and if knee pain is left untreated can it heal itself through rest.
When should I worry about my knee pain?
Typically, when experiencing knee pain, it is often linked to our physical activities. If the pain arises during exercise, it may be attributed to the intensity of the physical strain involved. If the pain decreases when the activity is finished, it is likely a temporary issue that will likely improve over time. However, if the pain persists during rest, it could indicate a more serious problem that requires attention.
If rest, anti-inflammatory measures, and lifestyle changes don't alleviate the pain, particularly if it interferes with sleep, it's advisable to seek further investigation. With aging, degenerative changes are expected, especially in those who lead active lifestyles. Yet, if the pain endures during rest, remains unaffected by activity levels, and worsens with movement, thorough examination is warranted.
What are the leading causes of knee pain?
The significance of the situation varies based on age groups. In a younger demographic, both males and females, if knee pain follows activities or traumatic incidents, it warrants attention. If the pain diminishes during rest after activity, it's likely a temporary issue. However, if the pain involves catching, locking, or restricted movement accompanied by swelling and throbbing after such activities, it suggests a substantial injury, necessitating specialised attention.
For individuals in the middle-age group, it's expected that degenerative changes occur over time, possibly accelerated by specific activities. If pain persists during rest and intensifies with certain activities, it indicates an underlying issue that should be addressed before resuming those activities.
Can over-exercising cause knee pain?
Knee pain can be particularly challenging for individuals unaccustomed to such discomfort. For those who decide to make sudden changes to their physical routine, such as transitioning from a sedentary lifestyle to the popular "couch to 5K" program without adequate preparation, proper warm-up, and attention to footwear and surroundings, the risk of experiencing knee pain is heightened. This abrupt shift can lead to discomfort. On the other hand, individuals accustomed to regular physical activities like running, outdoor pursuits, or gym workouts may develop knee pain after such activities. In these cases, the pain could indicate a more serious issue that may worsen over time and with continued activity, necessitating medical attention.
Regardless of age or fitness level, a general guideline for anyone embarking on a specific activity, be it marathon training or high-intensity workouts, is to consider a checkup with a specialist. This precautionary measure can help identify and address potential issues before they escalate.
If my knee pain goes untreated, can it cure by itself through rest?
If discomfort arises after a specific exercise or activity and improves with rest once the activity is halted, the pain is likely related to that activity. However, if the pain persists even during rest, even after taking a break from the particular activity for a few days, there's a likelihood that it will persist without intervention. It's not uncommon for us to undergo normal age-related degenerative changes. Even for those accustomed to regular physical activity, such as gym-goers or runners, a seemingly insignificant movement can trigger nonspecific knee joint pain. If left untreated, this pain can advance and result in symptoms that impede the ability to continue these activities. Therefore, individuals experiencing such pain should seek the expertise of a specialist before resuming their usual activities.