Knee pain is something that most everyone will experience at some point in their lifetime. Whether you are a marathon runner, a recreational skier, an office worker, or a truck driver, it is likely that a physical therapist is best equipped to help you overcome your pain. The cause of knee pain is often complex and due to many factors since we're all unique as individuals. Regardless of this complexity, research has shown that care by a physical therapist can often improve pain and disability levels, help you return to your hobby or sport more quickly, and help reduce the need for surgery, injections, or medications.
Your treatment with your therapist may include a resistance exercise program, a progressive aerobic exercise routine, manual therapy, and education on your pain/condition. You'll also receive a home exercise program to empower you to self-manage and treat your knee pain. You will also have access to an online portal where you can view your home program, ask your therapist a question, and track your progress. Each aspect of your care will be uniquely tailored to your ability, goals, and interests.
Here are 3 very important things to keep in mind to speed up your recovery:
1. Remain Active/Motion is Lotion
Try to keep moving as much as you comfortably can. Research has shown that staying active can be very beneficial in your recovery. It is good to continue your day-to-day activities and participate in light exercises, such as walking. If any of these activities increase your knee discomfort, it is okay to discontinue them and try something else. With that being said, if you have had a recent surgery or fracture and have special instructions about how much weight to put through your affected knee or have been instructed on how you can and cannot move that knee, it is very important to adhere to these guidelines!
2. Hurt Does Not Always Equal Harm
Many people with knee pain initially limit their activity because they are afraid to cause damage to their knees. As mentioned above, staying active is very important in your recovery. The human knee joint is remarkably strong and resilient, so it is highly unlikely that your normal day-to-day activities will do anything harmful to your knee. The severity of pain does not always match the level of damage to your body. Think of how painful stubbed toes can be, especially in the morning when you’re half asleep. There is very little tissue damage with a stubbed toe, but significant discomfort. With this in mind, it is important to be conscious of your pain, but do not let it scare you!
3. Changes in Your Symptoms
If you notice a significant increase in your pain, a drastic change in your ability to bear weight, or a serious worsening of your strength and ability to move your knee-- especially if you have recently had a surgical procedure-- please contact your physical therapist immediately!
We look forward to continuing to work with you!
- The Cadence PT Team