Anyone that suffers from arthritic knee pain knows how much that pain can sideline everyday activities. It can make things that you used to enjoy, into a chore to even try and accomplish. If you have been suffering from knee pain, you are likely willing to give anything a try to alleviate any or all of your pain. Some people say to use ice, while others say to use heat to help reduce that pain. Which one is going to help reduce your pain? Let’s take a look!
When You Should Use Ice for Knee Pain
When your knee pain hurts, or is too stiff to use normally, the first option you have is using ice to help reduce the pain in your knee. The cold is able to reduce the inflammation and swelling that is causing some of your knee pain, and give you back a bit of movement. Putting cold on your knee can also numb a bit of the pain to give you a short window where your knee hurts less to move around. Ideally, you want to have ice on your knee for about ten minutes at a time, giving your knee a break in between cycles. This seems to be particularly effective immediately following an injury.
Some people have found the most effective method of applying ice to be through massage. Taking a cup of ice, such as water that has been frozen in an inexpensive Styrofoam cup, and applying that to your knee through massage can help reduce knee pain quickly. Some studies have even found that if you can do this for about 20 minutes each day, five days out of every week, that after two weeks, the range of motion in the affected knee has gone up.
When Heat Will Help More with Your Knee Pain
There are many benefits of easing your knee pain with heat, such as the heat’s ability to improve the flow of blood in the affected area. The increased blood flow allows your knee to get more healing cells flooding into it, allowing it to heal more rapidly. Massaging your knee with a warm washcloth, taking a nice warm bath, or using a heating pad can give you enough relief to be able to run to the store, head to the doctor, or spend some time with some friends.
You need to make sure that you are not using heat that will burn you, no matter which route you take. You should be comfortable with the heat on your knee, not borderline or crossing into the uncomfortable range. The heat is to help relax the knee and surrounding areas to boost healing and reduce knee pain, not to make you tense up worrying that you are about to get burned. If you are not able to take the time to put a heating pad or heated compress on your knee before running out on a busy day, try taking a warm bath instead of a morning shower, or drying your clothes for a few extra minutes in the dryer, and wearing them straight out of the dryer so they are warm when you put them on.
Other Options to Help with Knee Pain
If you are not getting significant pain relief from cold or heat, you have a few different options. First, you can contact your doctor and see what he or she has to say in terms of the cause of your knee pain. They may be able to help you with alternatives you have not tried, or even by giving you some medication to take the edge off your knee pain and improve your healing. Second, you can try moving through the pain to see if some of the pain is from your lack of motion. Finally, you can try to lose weight if you have any weight to lose, as this means less pressure on your knee, which often results in less knee pain.
The experts at Epic Healthcare are great resources when it comes to helping with knee pain. They have many different options at their disposal to help you feel and move better. Instead of waiting for the pain to go away on its own or living in misery, give them a call. They can help you get the diagnosis you need to reduce your knee pain and get back to living. You may have injured your knee to where you need surgery, physical therapy, or even a brace to support your knee for a bit, but only a professional is going to know how to help ease your knee pain. You do not need to live with constant pain in your knees; there is help out there to make your day easier.