Articles

Osteoarthritis – what a PAIN, literally!

Joint pain happens to the best of us – osteoarthritis particularly becomes a real pain to some of us as we get older. People ask “why me?” It seems that there are many predisposing factors from genetics, to our activity levels, obesity, age, and previous joint injury. The condition can be present when there is pain on movement of a specific joint and you may find that you have early morning stiffness that lasts no longer than 30 minutes.

So what can you do to help yourself? What does the scientific evidence show?

  • Body weight can have huge impacts on your arthritis. It makes sense– the heavier you are, the more weight your joints have to struggle putting up with. Think about your
  • Footwear and the way you walk can significantly help to manage the condition. Imagine you have arthritis in your knees but you have an awkward flat footed posture. The uneven weight distribution could potentially cause more pain as it affects the kinetic chain higher up. Think about seeing a podiatrist or buying some arch supports.

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  • Another way to manage pain is using heat or ice therapy. If your joint is swollen, using ice can actually reduce the swelling by a process called vasoconstriction (or narrowing of the blood vessels to that joint). On the other hand many people prefer heat to help with stiffness – you can consider placing a tubigrip on your affected joint or placing a hot water bottle on it.
  • The right exercise in key!!! Low impact exercise to strengthen your muscles can help you manage your condition and prevent further deterioration. Swimming, cycling, thai chi, yoga, and pilates are all great sports that are low impact. Physiotherapists can also point you in the right direction and can teach you specific strengthening and stretching exercises that are right for you. Physiotherapists can also use mobilisation techniques, electrotherapy and acupuncture to help give you pain relief.
  • If you feel unstable on your feet, don’t hesitate to use a walking stick or an appropriate walking aid assessed by your physiotherapist.
  • Painkillers – this can definitely help. If you are unsure about what to take, speak to your GP.
  • Local steroid injections – this can be beneficial but many people I have treated say that the positive effects can be short lived.
  • The last resort is a joint replacement. Ideally you want to avoid going down this route by using the above self-management techniques. I have however rehabilitated many people following surgery and it has given them a new lease of life. Speak to your orthopaedic consultant who can tell you whether you are eligible for one.

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Why choose Home Physio Group?

We are a dedicated team of Chartered Physiotherapists working exclusively in your home and providing the highest level of care. We recognise the importance of knowing that you are in safe hands and being looked after. With this is mind, our client management team are here to assist you every step of the way and will answer any questions you may have. We are passionate about helping you to reach your goals, relieve your pain, and improve your mobility.

The benefits of using our service include:

  • All our physiotherapists are hand-picked professionals with years of experience
  • We are registered with the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) and Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC). All our physiotherapists are checked by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) 
  • We will arrange visits in your own home (or care home or place of work) at a convenient time to you
  • We work at speed and do not have a waiting list
  • We offer daytime, evening and weekend appointments
  • Our team work closely with the country’s leading consultants and specialists in their field
  • You will always have the same physiotherapist visiting you at home
  • You can have as may visits as you require
  • Our fixed pricing structure can be provided in writing so that you can consider it in your own time
  • We believe there is no “one size fits all” approach to care. Your personalised programme and treatment strategy will be unique to you