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Knee pain

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From the weekend warrior, to professional athletes, to senior tennis players and joggers have one thing in common knee pain. Easily one of our most frequent health complaints in knee pain. An estimated 50 million Americans suffer from some sort of knee pain or injury.

Warning signs - any continuous pressure on the kneecap can cause pain and that pressure increases when your leg muscles are not prepared to do whatever you are trying to make them do.

Some experts feel that a lot knee pain is caused by weak lower body muscles. A prior strength training routine can help remedy a lot of problems.

But whether you an NFL player or the week day mall walker at the Cherry Creek mall in Denver, kneeVitality's doctors say you can beat knee pain. Here are some routes to relief, along with some tips to prevent knee pain in the future.

Icing
For most forms of knee pain, applying ice is the first step to recovery. Ice also acts as an anesthetic to soothe the ache.

Use an ice pack or ice cubes inside a plastic bag. Just make sure the ice pack is wrapped in a towel, so it does not come in direct contact with your skin. Ice a sore knee no longer than 20 minutes every hour.

Anti-inflammatory over the counter (OTC) pain medication Try an anti-inflammatory over the counter (OTC) pain medication like Advil. Make sure you read the warning labels and do not take it if your doctor has warned you against taking similar medications. You can calm inflammation and soreness with over-the-counter remedies that contain the anti-inflammatory ingredient ibuprofen. Nuprin, Advil and Motrin are among the more commonly known brands of over-the-counter anti-inflammatory. Generic anti-inflammatory marked ibuprofen will also suffice.

Taken as directed, ibuprofen is also a painkiller, so it is important not to be tricked into a false sense of security when the pain eases. When you resume your activity, try it when you are not taking an anti-inflammatory, so you can feel the pain if your knee sends out warning signals.

Some people report using bromelain works as a natural anti-inflammatory claiming that speeds the healing process. It is sold in tablet form in some health food stores. There have not been any conclusive studies showing bromelain's effectiveness.

Unbrace yourself. Wearing a knee brace may be a short-term solution after a particularly painful bout of knee pain. However, it is typically not a long term fix if you are suffering from an injury.

Avoid the knee bashers. Some activities, such as running and hiking over hilly terrain, put a greater demand on the kneecap than others. If you are having knee pain, minimize those activities until you have had time to strengthen your leg muscles.

Check out new workouts. Knee problems often occur when someone starts a workout program without first understanding how to properly perform exercises or an activity. Consult your kneeVitality clinic or see a certified trainer to assist in getting your training regimen up and running.

Should you see a doctor? - Of course, when in doubt see a doctor.
When in doubt see a doctor. There is no reason to play a guessing game of self-diagnosis. In particular, anytime you notice that there is pain or weakness or that your knee is swelling (especially after an injury) you should see the doctor. Swelling could be a sign of serious internal knee damage, including bleeding or torn cartilage.

Runners and walkers, check your soles. If you are a frequent runner or walker, you need stable shoes if you want to avoid knee injury. Examine the shoes you have been wearing to see whether it is time for a new pair. One way to check is to place them on a table at eye level to see whether the shoes stand straight up. (If the soles have worn down unevenly, the shoes will tip out or in.) Also, examine around the mid-sole and sides to spot excessive wear. Shoes wear out at different rates but usually 3 months is the months or 150 miles is about as far as they will go with out degrading.

Correct shoes to reduce knee pain
Keep your knees in mind when you go shopping for shows. If you have kneecap-related pain, there's a good chance that you're a pronator someone whose foot turns toward the inside with every step. When you examine your shoes, notice whether your right shoe is caved to the left or your left shoe is caved to the right.

When shoes are worn down this way, it is a sure sign that you are a pronator Ask for a stable shoe when you are buying running or walking shoes.

Strengthen your leg muscles
Muscle up your leg muscles. To strengthen the quadriceps, the thigh muscles that hold your knees in place, start with straight leg raises. Lie on your back with your right knee straight and your right foot angled about 20 degrees toward the outside. To keep your spine in a neutral position, you can place a rolled-up towel under the small of your back. Keeping the foot angled, slowly lift your leg a few inches off the floor. Hold your leg in place for a count of three and then lower it. Repeat with the left leg.

This exercise should be repeated about 50 times. It is one of the best quadriceps strengtheners around.

Work your hamstrings. To rehabilitate an injured knee, it is essential to build up strength in the hamstring muscles on the back of the thigh.

Lose some weight. Every time you run or walk, the force of your feet hitting the ground is felt in your knees. For someone who is 30 pounds overweight that is a substantial increase in the force placed on the joint. Less weight on your frame simply means less damage with each step.

If you're using a stair climber take very short steps. You do not want to bend your knee excessively. This reduces the stress on the knee joints.

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