Chronic pain can take a toll on your body and life, zapping you of energy and making it difficult to engage in activities you love. Fortunately, many conditions are treatable with therapy and medication. The first step of finding relief is knowing what’s causing your discomfort. If you have chronic joint or knee pain, here are four common causes.
4 Potential Causes of Joint & Knee Pain to Know
Osteoarthritis is the most common joint condition, affecting 30 million Americans. Sometimes called degenerative joint disease, it involves a breakdown of cartilage, which results in bones rubbing against one another. The result is pain and swelling. The condition mostly affects older adults, but can occur at any age. You may be at increased risk if you’re a longtime athlete, which may result in an overused joint such as an elbow or knee, or if you’re overweight, which may put added pressure on the joints.
2. Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic autoimmune disease in which the immune system mistakenly perceives the cells in your joints as a threat. It attacks them, resulting in swelling, stiffness, and pain. Over time, this can result in permanent damage to the joint, cartilage, and bone. Rheumatoid arthritis typically affects smaller joints, such as those in the hand and wrist. It often involves rheumatoid nodules, or bumps, which appear under the skin.
3. Psoriatic Arthritis
Psoriatic arthritis can affect people who have psoriasis, a skin condition that causes patches of red, scaly skin. The skin lesions typically precede arthritis, but you may get arthritis first and skin lesions later. As with all arthritis, it involves joint pain, stiffness, and swelling. Both psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis may flare up and recede, with symptoms appearing suddenly or gradually.
Fibromyalgia is another common disorder affecting millions of people in the United States. It involves joint and muscle pain, aches, and fatigue. The condition is often triggered by stress. Although men can get it, it is most common in women ages 40 to 75. You may be at a higher risk of developing fibromyalgia if you are overweight or have lupus or rheumatoid arthritis.
If you’re experiencing joint pain, including shoulder, wrist, or knee pain, see your doctor as soon as possible. Depending on your condition, treatments such as OsteoStrong may be able to help you achieve a pain-free life. OsteoStrong O’Fallon in St. Charles County, MO, utilizes cutting-edge technology to help people with a broad range of conditions, including lower back pain, knee pain, hip pain, and osteoporosis. Call (636) 238-8696 to speak with a helpful staff member about how they’ll help you, or visit the website to learn more about this safe, noninvasive physical therapy treatment.