Why Does My Knee Hurt?

Knee pain is a common symptom in people of all ages, however people who are classed as either overweight or senior citizens may be particularly susceptible.

Why Do We Get Knee Pain?

Your knees support the full weight of your body and the knee joints are vulnerable to damage and pain, particularly when you run, jump or move the joint quickly. Knee pain can start suddenly, often after exercise or injuring your knee. 

‘I was in the gym feeling very proud of myself for working out a bit longer than normal and completing a few more reps than my last visit when I suddenly felt a pain in my left knee. I was really worried that I had overdone it and caused a serious injury.

I went into the local pharmacy to speak to the pharmacist and they provided me with some great advice and painkillers.  A couple of weeks later I’m back to the gym, although taking it a bit easier now and had some time with one of the trainers there who has shown me how to use the equipment correctly.’


Common Knee Complaints

One of the most common causes of knee pain is a simple strain, which is usually caused by doing more activity that your knees are used to. A strain means that the tissues in the knee have been stretched but are not permanently damaged.

Sometimes knee pain can be caused by wear and tear or damage to the knee joint. The tissues that cushion the bones in the knee joint can become worn as you get older and this can be a common cause of knee pain in middle aged and older people.

Knee Pain Treatments

In many cases, you can treat your knee pain yourself at home by doing the following:

  • Avoid putting weight on your knee
  • Raise your leg on a cushion to reduce any swelling
  • Use an ice pack, or a bag of frozen peas wrapped in a tea towel. Hold this on your knee for about 15 minutes and repeat every hour
  • Over the counter pain killers such as anti-inflammatories can be taken to relieve the pain as well as any inflammation

Knee Pain Prevention

There are also some things you can do to help prevent knee pain in the first instance:

  • Try to maintain a healthy weight
  • Always warm up before exercising and do some stretching to cool down after exercising
  • Increase your activity levels slowly, especially if you haven’t done much exercise for a while
  • Try low impact exercises such as swimming to improve your general health and fitness without putting pressure on your knee joints

Visit your local Alphega Pharmacy to find out answers to commonly asked questions about knee problems and injuries, including conditions which can cause pain and discomfort. Your Pharmacist can give you advice on the best pain relief, knee supports and other supplements which may help.

If you find you are getting frequent knee or joint pain, or have pain in more than one joint, this could be a sign of osteoarthritis, especially in older people. Younger people can also be affected by osteoarthritis, especially if they are overweight or have had a serious knee injury in the past.

If you think your knee pain may be caused by osteoarthritis, you should speak to your GP.

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