Joint Pain: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

Joint Pain: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

Dec 31, 2021, 1:54:26 PM Life and Styles

Introduction:

Pain, aches, and stiffness in the joints are common problems especially with adults over 40 years of age. There are many factors that can  contribute to joint pain including, but not limited to: age, disease, injury, lifestyle choices and occupation.


Although joint pain is sometimes unpredictable it is important to know the symptoms to properly evaluate the source of the pain and find proper treatment by consulting a doctor. Storing over the counter medications at home from an online pharmacist can also be a big help for those suffering from joint pain.

In this blog post, we will review the different types of joint pain, as well as discuss some possible causes and treatments. But before that let us first understand:


What is Joint Pain?

Joint pain is the sensation of ache, discomfort or stiffness felt in the area where bones meet. The parts that generally experience joint pain include your knees, wrists, shoulders, and the back of the neck.


Joints aid in locomotion, providing the body the ability to move from one place to another. But when they become painful or stiff it may limit your ability to move around or perform daily activities easily.


Joint pain can range from mild to severe depending on the condition of the person subjecting it. It is generally not a serious medical issue unless it is accompanied by an acute injury, fever, swelling, redness, and other symptoms that indicate infection. It is also important to note that acute joint pain can turn chronic if not taken care of.


What are the Types of Joint Pain?

There are various types of joint pain that are associated with different causes. But before we discuss these it is important to note that joint pain can also be acute or chronic.


Acute joint pain – Acute joint pain is characterized by a sudden onset of symptoms within one week or less and lasts for a short period of time, usually from 7 days up to 3 months. In most cases, the symptoms tend to subside on their own but it is important to seek medical advice especially if there are signs of injury, fever, or other symptoms that indicate infection.


Chronic joint pain – Joint pain which lasts longer than 3 months is called chronic joint pain. This type of joint pain tends to be moderate to severe and may not subside on its own. The duration varies depending on the cause and may range from a few months to years. It is important to note that chronic joint pain can turn into an autoimmune disease if not taken care of.


Common kind of Chronic Joint Pain:

Osteoarthritis:

This type of arthritis occurs when there is damage to the cartilage found in the joints. The cartilage acts as a cushion between the joints to reduce friction and wear. As it gets damaged, joint pain results.


Rheumatoid arthritis:

This is an autoimmune disease that causes joint pain due to swelling of the synovium which swells up in response to inflammation. Other symptoms include fever, weight loss, and fatigue.


Gout:

This is a kind of arthritis that results from the accumulation of uric acid crystals in the joints. The joints in turn swell up causing severe pain. It can affect any joint but commonly affects the big toe.


Fibromyalgia:

It is a disorder characterized by body pain, fatigue, and mental stress. In this condition, the immune system reacts abnormally causing chronic inflammation within the joints and muscles. The symptoms include tenderness around specific points in the body as well as stiffness throughout the day that does not go away with exercise or rest.


Tendinitis:

This condition involves inflammation of the tendons that attach muscles to bones. When the tendon gets inflamed it causes stiffness and pain within the joints as well as difficulty or inability to move around. 


What Causes Joint Pain?

Although arthritis is a commonly known cause of joint pain there are other factors that can contribute to the development of aches and stiffness in the joints. Some of these include:


  • Injury - Injuries in any part of the body can lead to injury in another. If you have a knee injury it is important to consider possible injuries in your wrist, elbow, or neck.


  •  Lifestyle choices - Injuries or lifestyle choices such as smoking, poor posture and lack of physical activity can lead to joint pain. Smoking for example causes the cartilage found in the joints to wear out faster thus increasing chances of developing pain.


  • Age- Joints are also more susceptible to injury and arthritis with age because aging causes the cartilage and muscles to weaken.


  • Occupation – Jobs that entail putting a lot of pressure or force on particular joints like those related to painting, carpentry, and plumbing can also contribute to stress and injury in these joints.


What are the Signs and Symptoms of Joint Pain that Should be a Reason to Worry?

There are several signs and symptoms that indicate joint pain. Some of the common ones include:

  • Aches – Joint pain can feel like a pins and needles sensation or a dull ache that comes on gradually. It is more likely to be acute if it is accompanied by swelling, redness, and fever.


  • Stiffness – Joint pain can be characterized by stiffness in the joints which limits movement after a long period of time, usually after you wake up or come back from sleeping. The stiffness goes away with exercise or movement but comes back later.


  • Swelling – Swelling of the joints can be a sign of gout, which is an autoimmune disease characterized by the accumulation of uric acid in the body. When this accumulates in the joints it causes severe pain and swelling.


  • Joint redness – This may be accompanied by fever or chills, both are signs that there is an infection in the joint. This occurs when the immune system reacts to an infection or virus in the joint.


  • Tenderness – Tenderness around specific points on the body are another sign of joint pain. Individuals with tendinitis for example experience tenderness at specific points because these are areas where the tendon attaches to bones.


  • Fatigue – Joint pain can be accompanied by fatigue due to the physical stress put on the body when it is in pain.


  • Difficulty moving – Joint pain can limit movement of joints making exercise or doing daily tasks difficult.


How Joint Pain can be Treated?

Although there is no actual cure for joint pain there are a lot of treatments available to help relieve pain and manage the condition. These include:


Medications: 

There are different medications available with online chemist to help relieve pain and discomfort. These include acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and narcotic drugs for severe pain.


Oral supplements: 

There are also certain types of supplements that can help manage this condition. Fish oil for example has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties that may be helpful in managing chronic inflammation resulting from the condition.


Physical therapy: 

This involves exercises that may help strengthen muscles and ligaments around the joints thus helping support them. These exercises focus on stretching, strengthening, endurance, and coordination of the muscles involved with the movement of the joint.


Surgery

There are surgical procedures that can help repair damaged cartilage or remove bone spurs which are often the cause of pain.


  • Knee replacement – If the pain is severe this procedure may be considered. This involves replacing or reconstructing all or part of the knee as a way to relieve the pain and help the person function normally.


  • Joint fusion – Another surgical procedure where one joint is removed and the two bones that join directly are fused together with metal plates and screws. This is often done in the spine to alleviate pain resulting from damage or deterioration of the joints between two vertebrae.


  • Joint reconstruction – If all else fails, part of the joint may be replaced with synthetic material like Teflon, which is not as durable but can provide relief in extreme cases.


Are there any Natural Remedies for Joint Pain?

There are a number of home remedies you can use to manage this condition. These include:

Ice – Use ice packs or cold compresses on your joints as needed to reduce inflammation and swelling. This is especially helpful if there is redness and warmth around the joint because these are signs that the joint is infected.


Warm compresses – Warm compresses can relieve pain and discomfort by bringing blood to the area and speeding up healing. This should be done in a hot water bath that does not cause burning or discomfort on the skin. A towel wrapped around this can be used to apply heat.


Essential oils – Essential oils such as peppermint and lavender can be used to reduce the pain and inflammation associated with joint pain. These should be applied to the joints or diffuse into the air for an added scent.


Massage – Massaging your joints may help by increasing blood flow and relieving some of the tension in these areas. Regular massages can help to relieve the stress that comes with this condition. knee support from a UK pharmacy can also help reduce stress.


Exercise – Exercises like yoga or qigong may be helpful in managing joint pain because these include movements that focus on stretching, balance, and coordination around affected joints. These exercises can strengthen muscles and ligaments surrounding the joints thus helping support it effectively.


Acupuncture – Acupuncture may help relieve pain and inflammation by increasing circulation in the area.


Glucosamine – This is an amino sugar that is found naturally in cartilage, tendons, and muscles. Taking glucosamine supplements from online chemist UK can help improve the production of cartilage around the joints thus relieving pain.


How do you Prevent Joint Pain?

There are several things that can be done to prevent joint pain from occurring in the first place or at least lessen the severity of this condition. These include:


Keeping a healthy weight – Carrying extra pounds puts a lot of stress on joints making them more susceptible to damage and wear and tear leading to pain.


Regular exercise – Exercising can strengthen muscles and ligaments around the joints thus helping support them properly.


Quit smoking – Smoking has been linked to a heightened risk of developing osteoarthritis or wear and tear of the cartilage that cushions the ends of bones in your joints.


Reduce stress – Higher levels of stress may increase inflammation of the joints making it more painful. Try to reduce stress by taking up a hobby or going on a vacation from work for a while.


Healthy diet – A diet that is high in saturated fat, processed foods, and sugar can increase inflammation of your joints which can lead to damage and pain. A healthy diet includes lots of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean meat, and legumes.


Take supplements – Taking supplements from pharmacies online containing essential fatty acids like omega-3 can reduce inflammation making it less painful to move around. Making sure you have sufficient vitamin D is important for strong bones especially around the joints. Vitamin C helps boost your body's production of collagen which is a protein that keeps your bone and cartilage strong.


Conclusion:

Joint pain is a common medical condition that can affect people of all ages. This condition is characterized by pain and discomfort in a joint usually caused by inflammation, infection or an injury to the area. There are different types of conditions that can cause this such as sprains, bursitis, gout and arthritis among others.


The good news is that there are many things you can do to manage this condition ranging from lifestyle changes, taking online pharmacist supplements, and using essential oils for added support.

















Published by Sara Wilson

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