Your joints are aching — again. Your body depends on joints for movement and function, so joint pain can interrupt the most basic tasks of your day.
While joints can hurt temporarily due to injury or overuse, pain can also be a sign of a chronic condition like arthritis or a nagging soft tissue disorder like bursitis or tendonitis.
While you have home care alternatives, turn to Westside Pain Specialists when you need more advanced care. We specialize in all types of joint pain, and we can help you with a personalized pain management plan.
Why do my joints hurt?
It takes a lot of coordinated biomechanical effort to move your body. While you may not think about everything that happens when you get up and walk to the fridge or pick up a smartphone, bones, muscles, and other connective tissues ensure that these movements are effortless.
Unless you have joint pain, of course. The reasons behind that pain can be quite widespread, since virtually every component of a joint can suffer from its own disorder.
The good news is that for occasional overuse injuries, you can treat your joint aches effectively at home. Chronic joint conditions, however, could require specialized medical care.
The RICE protocol
Treatment for almost any aching joint starts the same way. Remember the acronym RICE and you may be able to help your body heal itself.
Perhaps the most obvious treatment is simply stopping activities that cause joint pain. It’s not always possible or practical, but it’s the place to start. Your body is the best healer of itself, so give it a chance to work its magic.
Inflammation retreats from cold temperatures, so that ice pack you place on an aching joint helps to dial down swelling as well as numbing pain. Aim for 15-minute sessions every few hours.
Heating pads and other warm therapies may help, but avoid those for the first 24 hours after a joint starts aching so you don’t aggravate inflammation with heat.
Wrapping an injured joint also helps to prevent complications from swelling, and sometimes it may support a painful joint. Wrap the joint firmly in a comfortable position, but not so tight that you interfere with blood supply.
When it’s possible, get your sore joint above the level of your heart. This allows gravity to assist with blood flow and drainage. Blood flow promotes healing while drainage keeps swelling to a minimum.
Between these four steps, RICE helps you stay comfortable while starting your recovery.
When you try home care but aren’t getting effective relief, it’s time to visit us at Westside Pain Specialists. We review your symptoms and medical history to identify the cause of your pain as well as the best solution for it.
With offices in Beverly Hills and Rancho Cucamonga, California, we’re conveniently located. You can call the nearest office directly to book your consultation right now.