The Best Ways to Manage Your Joint Pain

Pain from inflamed joints can make it hard to walk and may stop you from enjoying activities you normally like to do. You may even be taking over-the-counter pain medications just to make it through each day. If you’re experiencing joint pain and it’s affecting your quality of life, there are many solutions that will help you get back to pain-free living.

Dr. David Wu is a board-certified pain management specialist who helps patients in the greater Los Angeles area improve mobility and reduce their joint pain. When you first come in to see Dr. Wu at either our Torrance or El Segundo, California office, he’ll review your medical history and current symptoms to devise a unique treatment plan for you.

So what are the possible causes and best ways to manage your joint pain? Read on to find out more.

What is joint pain?

Joints connect bones together, giving your body the ability to move freely. If your joint becomes damaged through injury or disease, it can become inflamed and feel painful. Pain can range from mild to severe, last anywhere from a few weeks to much longer, and can be felt in any joint in your body.

Causes of joint pain

Dr. Wu’s treatment plan for you will depend on what’s causing your joint pain. Conditions that can lead to painful joints include the following:

Osteoarthritis

Also known as the degenerative joint disease, this condition involves the wearing down of cartilage and bone in the joint over time.

Rheumatoid arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease where the immune system attacks healthy tissue, leading to swelling and deformity in the joints over time.

Bursitis

Bursitis involves inflammation of fluid-filled sacs in the joints.

Gout

Gout is another form of arthritis that typically affects the big toe, rather than the entire body.

Injuries like sprains or strains can also cause joint pain.

Some people think growing older means developing joint pain, but this isn’t necessarily true. If you have pain and swelling in any of your joints, it is important to take action to alleviate the symptoms.

How to best manage your joint pain

There are things you can do at home to help manage your joint pain, and there are things that Dr. Wu or other medical professionals can do for you.

The best ways to self-care for your joint pain are to rest your joints and to avoid activities that trigger the pain. Ice the sore joint for 15 minutes a few times a day and keep it elevated above your heart to keep the swelling down. You can also take over-the-counter or prescription medications for your joint pain.

Some effective medications are:

If you’re overweight, try making healthy changes to your diet and exercising regularly. Low-impact exercises like walking and water aerobics are great options. Reducing your weight will take some pressure off your joints and may help alleviate the pain.

Physical therapy is another consideration, as it is designed to strengthen your body and help stabilize your knees and other joints.

If necessary, Dr. Wu can inject your swollen and painful joint with corticosteroids to reduce swelling. He can also perform radiofrequency ablation (RFA), which uses electrical current to reduce pain signals, on joints that have been damaged by arthritis.

If you’re located in the greater Los Angeles area, Dr. Wu can help you manage your joint pain and get back to living your life. To find out more, give us a call or use our online booking tool.

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