Understanding Knee Pain

If you find your knee pain hard to pinpoint or describe, you’re not alone. Knee pain is common and can occur suddenly or over a period of time.

What are the symptoms of knee pain?

Below are some of the common symptoms you may have experienced with your knee pain:

  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Knee is hot to touch
  • Stiffness or inability to straighten your knee
  • Locking or clicking
  • A sensation of your knee ‘giving way’

What are the causes of knee pain?

Knees are complex, weight-bearing joints that flex, bend, and support your body. Our knees do all of this on a day-to-day basis and we never really notice them until we’re in pain. Knee pain can be a result of:

  • Knee injuries or accidents, where the knee was twisted too far in one direction and the muscles, ligaments or tendons that protect your knees are strained or torn.
  • Overuse - which can lead to muscle fatigue and excessive stress on your knees
  • Mechanical body problems, such as hip or knee problems, or when tight or weak muscles are unable to support the knee properly
  • Inflammatory or infectious causes
  • Osteoarthritis

When should I see my doctor?

If you have any of the following, see your doctor:

  • You have severe pain or the pain is getting worse
  • Your knee pain isn’t improving
  • You can’t put any weight on your knee
  • Your knee buckles, clicks, or locks
  • Your knee is swollen or red, or you have a fever


Lifestyle tips for knee pain

There are a few things you can do today to help relieve some of your knee pain. While these may seem like simple solutions, they can really make a difference in your daily pain level:

If you have an injury:

  • Ice your knees – this will help to reduce pain and inflammation
  • Rest and elevate your knees whenever possible
  • Try compression – a wrap around your knee(s) can help prevent fluid from building up in your knee joint

If you have a chronic condition, such as osteoarthritis:

  • Maintain a healthy weight - this will relieve any extra pressure being overweight will place on your knees
  • Commit to exercises like swimming or biking that are kind to your knees

Always consult with your doctor before starting a new exercise regimen or routine.

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