Chiropractic for Knee Pain
People suffering from symptoms related to back pain, neck pain, or headaches are most likely to seek chiropractic care. However, there are a lot of other pain related issues and injuries that a chiropractor can help treat as well. One common complaint that chiropractic care can help address is knee pain. Today, we will dive into how to decide if chiropractic for knee pain is right for you and what you can expect. This can help you feel well-informed and know when is the right time to give your local chiropractor a call for a formal assessment and treatment recommendations.
Understanding the Cause of Knee Pain
Some causes of knee pain are more obvious than others. For example, if you sustain a high impact injury during a sporting event or car accident you most likely know what initiated the pain you are experiencing. Alternatively, onset of knee pain can also be much more subtle with a gradual onset for what sometimes seems to be no reason. Common causes that lead to a gradual onset of pain include arthritis (aka wear and tear with aging), movement imbalances, previous injury, and being overweight. Regardless of what initiated the pain, understanding what structures within the knee itself are damaged and causing your symptoms of pain is an important piece in the puzzle of sustainable recovery.
Factors to Assess for Overall Knee Health
As with any joint, there are a lot of interconnected tissues that can all be a source of pain within the knee. Commonly affected tissues that can leave your knee feeling inflamed, stiff, or sore include the following (keep in mind that there is often damage to more than one tissue at a time):
- Meniscus- tear or damage to the cartilage within the knee joints that provides adequate cushioning with daily activities
- Intra-Articular cartilage- wear of the cartilage providing cushion to the ends of the bones that create the knee joint and under the kneecap as well, also known as arthritis
- Ligaments- sprain of one or all of the following: anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), medial cruciate ligament (MCL), and lateral cruciate ligament (LCL)
- Joint capsule- damage to the tissue that encapsulates the knee to stabilize and maintain appropriate fluid levels within the joint for lubrication and proper shock absorption
- Bone health- poor movement, being overweight, or stress can lead to stress fractures, bone spurs, osteoporosis, and more
- Muscles- strain or weakness of the local muscles, including the quads, adductors, abductors, hamstrings, and calf
- Patella (knee cap)- poor tracking or direct damage can illicit pain
- And so much more! There are a lot of local tissues that can send a pain signal to your brain within the knee that can often be addressed holistically.
Indicators for Chiropractic for Knee Pain
Chiropractors are trained to address health holistically. This means that they will look at your body as an intricate interconnected system (like it should be). Ultimately, this translates to long term results for issues like knee pain rather than just masking pain. Common recommendations with Western medicine for knee pain include heavy medication use and even surgery. Yet, there is a lot that can be done when the focus is on optimizing tissue health and finding innate balance. More invasive options with nasty side effects and risks should only be a last resort, with more conservative options like chiropractic care always being the first line of defense.
The most common issues that a chiropractor can help you with for knee pain include the following:
- Limited or painful knee range of motion
- Poor flexibility
- Muscle weakness
- Poor movement mechanics
- Imbalances in other areas of the body, such as the ankles, hips, or spine, that are putting excessive strain on the knee
- Oversensitized pain pathways- causing extreme sensitivity to touch, painful muscle guarding/tension, and excessive pain with what was once normal daily activities
- Chronic pain- either constant or on/off again
- Acute injury (once cleared of a significant tear or fracture)
- Injury prevention
Your chiropractor will carefully look at each of these common dysfunctions that are present with knee pain at your initial assessment. Thus, whether you realize what problems are at the root of your knee pain, your chiropractor will help you get to the bottom of it and prescribe a treatment plan that addresses any of these issues.
The Benefits of Seeing a Chiropractor for Knee Pain
If you are experiencing knee pain, you may feel on the fence about seeking care from a chiropractor- especially if you feel like you’ve tried everything. Yet, rest assured that there is hope and that chronic knee pain doesn’t have to necessarily be in your future or get continually worse. Now that you understand the causes of knee pain and what your chiropractor can assess, let’s dive into some of the specific benefits that chiropractic care can provide to give you knee pain relief.
Some of these benefits will provide direct relief while others are more secondary and will boost your overall health as well (yay!).
- Reduced dependence on pain medications for pain relief
- Less chance of need for surgery or injections
- Less down time away from the activities you love
- Future injury prevention
- Reduced risk of onset of arthritis (or progression if already present)
- Improved knee mechanics for better everyday function
- Better healing potential
- Overall boost in well-being
As you can see there are a ton of potential benefits to chiropractic care. If you are looking for a chiropractic professional in the Las Vegas, NV area you should get in touch with the team of recovery specialists at Advanced Spine and Posture. They can do an in depth assessment and determine what course of action is best for your recovery process to bring you the best results.
Chiropractic Treatment Options for Knee Pain
The bottom line is that a chiropractor can almost always help you get better results when trying to overcome knee pain. This is done by focusing on restoring balance. How do they do this? There are a lot of different treatment options depending on the severity of the pain, your stage of recovery, preferences, and more. The next time you experience knee pain from squatting, climbing stairs, walking, or any other daily activities, get in touch with your chiropractor as soon as possible (or find one!). For the best possible results, consider working with a chiropractor certified in Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP) like the Advanced Spine and Posture team in Las Vega, NV. These professionals specialize in science based techniques specifically designed to restore full body balance.
Chiropractic treatment options will include one or more of the following:
- Joint adjustments. The most obvious joint to be adjusted will be the knee if there are any imbalances or poor mobility. Plus, adjusting other areas of the body can help restore full balance. For example, mobility issues in the hip or spine misalignment (even subtle ones) can lead to changes in knee function and cause or exacerbate pain symptoms. Restoring alignment of the spine and mobility of other local joints will boost nervous system health for better healing, reduced sensitivity, and improved movement mechanics.
- Pain modalities. Immediate holistic pain relief can help you feel better and get you on track with other treatment options without the need for medication. Common chiropractic modalities that they can recommend for both clinic and home use include electrical stimulation, light therapy, ice packs, heating pads, self-massage, and traction.
- Manual therapy. Soft tissue massage for sore and inflamed connective tissue and muscle can help provide short term pain relief and relaxation. Additionally, the boost in blood flow and flexibility can help provide more long term benefits as well.
- Exercise training. Movement and posture training can reduce strain on effective tissues. Most often, you will start an exercise program at home (after proper instruction) that focuses on gentle stretching of tight muscles, leg strengthening, core strengthening, and eventually full body coordination.
- Lifestyle recommendations. A lot of our daily choices can affect our overall health and ability to cope with pain. Thus, your chiropractor might discuss options for improving your general health that can increase your overall healing potential. Recommendations might include options for weight loss, exercise, diet, sleep, and stress management- to name a few.
Holistic Care for Your Knee
Ignoring knee pain is never a good idea. It can lead to bigger problems down the road and put a major damper on your overall quality of life. Addressing any issues that crop up as soon as possible, or even before they start, is ideal- for your knee or any other part of your body. A chiropractor can be your guide to better health without knee pain looming over your head each day. You deserve to feel your best and free of knee pain. Discuss all the potential options with a trusted health professional like your local chiropractor. Again, if you want the best of the best in Las Vegas, NV, then give Advanced Spine and Posture a call!