Joints in our body are usually covered with cartilage, which help the bones glide smoothly over one another. However, sometimes the cartilages wears away, especially in the hip as well as knee joints. This leads to rubbing of the joint bones against each other due to lack of the required cushioning. This painful condition is termed as osteoarthritis or arthritis. Arthritis is condition of mechanical failure within our body, which restricts flexibility and movement of our joints. Since knee and hip joints are the primary source of physical movement and relocation, arthritis can limit your whereabouts considerably.
The very first symptom of arthritis is characterized by stiffness in your knee and hip area. Subsequent pain in groin, buttocks and/or thighs is also common. Locking of the knee while walking, climbing stairs, exercising, flexing, etc. are other signs of knee arthritis. Age is directly proportional to arthritis symptoms. Aging of the body leads to excessive wear and tear of the joint cartilages.
Arthritis if not severe can be treated at home. Do not overstress your joints, take adequate rest and stay away from all possible injuries. Physiotherapy is a suitable option to help you flex your joints and keep them pain-free. You can take painkillers (NSAIDS) or rub topical ointments to get relief from severe joint pains. Anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen, naproxen may also be prescribed by your doctor to give you fast relief from pain.
Keeping your weight in check can lessen your knee and hip pain due to arthritis. This is common sense since being overweight will put additional stress on your knees and hips. Exercising regularly will keep your joints functioning better and keep them flexible as well as strong. Make sure you just follow light exercises and not over stress your already painful joints.
Arthritis if ignored and not treated, will worsen over time and with age. Since the cartilage gets constantly worn away, the knee and hip joints will get swollen and become more painful. Some arthritis patients resort to sticks and canes to help themselves move around. Very severe cases of knee pain require steroidal injections that are directly given to the affected joint to give quick relief from acute pain. But steroidal medications have a lot of long-term adverse effects and hence should be avoided.
If your movements get completely restricted due to severe knee or hip arthritis, joint replacement becomes the only cure. This is the last measure of treatment that is exercised when every other option to relieve pain fails. The surgeon in charge will either partially or completely replace your joint in question to give you permanent pain relief. After recovering from the knee or hip replacement surgery, most people can again walk normally and are free from joint pains.