4 Reasons to Visit a Knee Specialist

Your knee is one of the most active joints in your body. You use it in nearly every movement in your day to day life, which makes it a joint that is particularly vulnerable to damage. Signs of damage can often be subtle, but they only get worse over time and can plague you in old age.

Athletes and people working in jobs that require lifting are especially prone to having problems in their knees later in life. A knee specialist can identify these problems before they start, or remedy them as they are progressing in order to ensure the damage does not progress to a worse point in the future. The following are some specific reasons to visit a knee specialist.

  1. Chronic Pain

Chronic pain is often mistaken for pain that is constant and unceasing, but that is only one of the classifications of a chronic condition. A condition can be chronic if the pain recurs in the same place over and over again. Experiencing chronic pain in the knees is a sure sign that something is wrong.

4 Reasons to Visit a Knee Specialist

Many conditions, such as ligament tears, often go painless, even when they are just starting. In reality, they will start to hurt at random moments throughout the day.

  1. Swelling

This condition is most noticeable when affecting one knee and not the other. If your knees have started to look uneven and you have discomfort in the larger knee, then there may be swelling. Swelling is the body’s reaction to the healing process in order to call your attention to the area and protect it from further damage.

  1. Popping

All joints tend to pop. This is because of the fluid filled sac inside your joints fill up throughout the day. When you pop a joint, the sound is the fluid flushing out, and it is a completely normal occurrence in your body.

A condition that requires further study involves popping that is constant. While joint popping tends to be loud and requires moments of recovery before occurring again, popping that is constant with no recovery period may be a sign of a joint condition.

  1. Soreness

This is similar to chronic pain, but it is more general. While chronic pain may be a sharp sting from one particular area, you may be unable to point out exactly where the pain is coming from. General soreness does not have to be painful either, but rather a feeling of general discomfort that tends to get worse with movement.

The above four conditions are just a few that should be looked at by a knee specialist. While they appear very general, most of the time they are signs of specific conditions that can get worse as time goes on, especially without rest and the proper physical therapy. In order to ensure that you have use of your joints for years to come, you should consult a knee specialist for more information about a problem that has become persistent for you.

3 Common Reasons to Go to an Orthopedic Clinic

A lot of people think they should go to see the orthopedist only for advanced conditions in the bones and muscles, such as fractures or arthritis. However, there are plenty of reasons to see this type of specialist. If you are suffering from the following conditions, you should consider visiting an orthopedic clinic to get a more thorough diagnosis based on the symptoms you are feeling.

  1. Wrist and Elbow Pain

This is a common condition among office workers everywhere and is characterized by a dull pain that often comes up at random times throughout the day. This pain is especially common while seated and typing at a desk. Many people will ignore this pain, but it can actually turn into a serious condition over time. While the root causes of these conditions may be hard to identify initially, an orthopedist will be able to dive deeper for more information.

3 Common Reasons to Go to an Orthopedic Clinic

The most common illness that results from wrist pain or elbow pain is known as carpal tunnel, which affects the entire hand. This condition requires surgery and will get worse over time, and it can even cause you to lose all movement in your hands. You want to take preventative measures (which your orthopedist can tell you about) to assure this condition doesn’t progress

  1. Pain from Sports

Most people should expect to feel sore after playing sports because they require hours of physical activity and repetitive movements. However, there are many conditions that can go untreated for years that are linked to this initial soreness. This is the reason that so many people who were athletes when they were younger suffer from joint conditions when they are older.

The way to distinguish common muscle soreness from the early signs of a harmful condition is by looking at how long the pain lasts and any other associated problems that might occur. The most common symptoms associated with pain are popping or swelling. These symptoms will require further analysis at an orthopedic clinic.

  1. Stiffness

People notice pain more than anything because it is your body telling you that there is a problem that needs to be addressed. Despite this, there are other problems that may not cause noticeable pain, especially in the joints.  When you start to notice your movement has become stiffer and it is harder to articulate your joints, then there might be a deeper problem.

You will be able to distinguish this stiffness when it is harder to carry out normal tasks that require your joints, such as walking, bending, or writing. When you are presented with these problems you will have to see an orthopedist to identify the cause. A common culprit is arthritis, but it could be a number of conditions.

The orthopedist is there to find the potential for damage in the future as well as alleviate any pain or discomfort in the present. If you are experiencing any of the above warning signs, or you feel chronic discomfort in your joints and bones, you should consider going to an orthopedic clinic to find out more about what might be causing the problem.

How to Prevent Sports Injuries

Sports buffs and athletes already know the health and social benefits associated with regular physical activity. That being said, sporty individuals are all too familiar with the risk of sports injuries. If you get injured, you’ll not only limp in pain but are also likely unable to play for days or weeks. As such, your best bet is to protect yourself from sports injuries by observing the following tips.

Wear the Proper Equipment

There’s a good reason why football players are decked out in bulky uniforms. After all, if you’re going to be clobbered and tackled to the ground, you’d want to be as protected as possible. Whether your chosen sport is hockey or boxing, never forego the designated equipment that can go a long way towards preventing injuries.

Warm Up Properly

You may be excited to hit the field, but make sure to warm up properly before each game to prepare your muscles and avoid injuries. Practice common movements that can stretch out muscles and help them perform better.

Designate Rest Days

Sports activities place a great amount of strain on your muscles, but this same strain helps build them up as well. If you train or play hard every day of the week, however, you might overtax your muscles and sustain an injury. Assign a day or two per week where all you do is rest so your muscles and connective tissues have a chance to repair themselves.

Common Back Problems: Sciatica

More than 65 million Americans suffer from back problems. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, back problems rank among the most common causes of missed work and job-related disabilities in the United States. Oftentimes, a back problem arises from a condition called sciatica.

Sciatica is often characterized by pain due to general compression or irritation of any of the five spinal nerve roots of each sciatic nerve. When the sciatic nerve is irritated, the patient can experience incapacitating pain, numbness, and/or a tingling sensation at the lower extremities of the body.

Relieving sciatic pain can take anywhere from weeks to years, depending on the cause. Medications are usually the first treatment option for sciatica patients. If medications don’t work, however, the patient may require orthopedic surgery, epidural injection, or even alternative medicines.

The main symptom of sciatica is pain that may be felt anywhere along the sciatic nerve, which can be in the lower back, the buttocks, or at the back of either leg. Pain can range from mild soreness to shooting or severe pain.

Patients with sciatica are generally seen by orthopedists. You’ll want to visit an orthopedic center soon if you suspect you have sciatica.

What You Need to Know about the Achilles Tendon

The Achilles tendon is a long fibrous band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the calf muscles. According to medical experts, the Achilles tendon is the strongest tendon in the body; experts claim that the Achilles tendon can bear ten times a person’s body weight.

Although the Achilles tendon is regarded as the strongest tendon in the body, sports medicine experts also admit that the Achilles tendon is vulnerable to injuries. This is likely because the Achilles tendon is often stretched to full capacity.

When the Achilles tendon is overworked, Achilles tendonitis, an inflammation of the tendon at the heel that causes heel pain, may develop. Sports medicine experts advise people who have been experiencing heel pain to rest and use a cold compress on the Achilles tendon to prevent further injury.

If a person decides to keep going despite symptoms of Achilles tendonitis, the Achilles tendon weakens further, increasing the chances of a rupture, which will result in an Achilles tendon completely severed from the heel. Many people claim to hear a “popping” sound and having difficulty walking after the tendon has been ruptured.

Should this happen, surgery will be highly recommended as is the only way to completely recover. If you suspect you have ruptured your Achilles tendon, see a sports medicine expert immediately for diagnosis and treatment.

Vitamin D to Keep Your Bones Healthy

Calcium and bones— they go hand in hand. People are taught early on that they need a certain amount of calcium to keep their bones healthy. However, do you know that Vitamin D is just as important as calcium when it comes to maintaining healthy bones? Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium better, effectively playing a role in the formation and maintenance of good strong bones.

Vitamin D deficiency risks

Numerous studies have revealed that people who are deficient in Vitamin D have lower bone mass, which increases their risk of osteoporosis. In children, severe cases of vitamin D deficiency can lead to delayed growth and the development of bone deformities called rickets. In adults, a softening of the bones— osteomalacia— can develop.

Sources of Vitamin D

The sun is the best source of Vitamin D. Spending 10 to 15 minutes a day in the sun will get you the Vitamin D you need, as the sun’s UV rays help generate the much-needed vitamin on your skin. You can also obtain the vitamin from foods such as fatty fish, egg yolk, and liver. If it’s impossible for you to get adequate amounts of Vitamin D from these sources, your doctor may recommend that you take supplements.

Should you need orthopedic advice or assistance regarding Vitamin D deficiency, feel free to consult an orthopedic surgeon.

Sports Medicine Treatment for Dislocated Shoulders

The shoulder joint, because it is a ball and socket joint, allows people to move their arms in various directions that other joints cannot do. However, the wide range of motion ball and socket joints provide comes with a price—the shoulder is more susceptible to dislocations.

A dislocated shoulder occurs when a person receives a hard blow or falls awkwardly on the shoulder. The hard blow or awkward fall causes the upper arm bone to be separated from the shoulder blade socket. It is easy to diagnose a dislocated shoulder as most cases exhibit a deformation of the shoulder area accompanied by pain when attempting to move the arm.

After sustaining a dislocated shoulder, a quick trip to a sports medicine clinic should be a priority. More often than not, the pain and swelling that accompany a dislocated shoulder intensifies with each passing minute after the injury occurs.

Upon arriving at the clinic, a sports medicine professional will then reposition the arm bone back into the shoulder blade socket. You may then be given some anti-inflammatory medication to reduce the swelling. You may also be asked to come back to the clinic for physical therapy if the dislocation is severe. Severe dislocations often damage the tissue in the shoulder, opening the door for more dislocations in the future.