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Knee Osteoarthritis in Active Aging Adults

This is an extremely common condition I see as a PT, especially in the active population in older adults! It usually goes something like this...Someone comes in with knee pain that is limiting them from being as active as they want to. They want to hike, walk the dog, be able to get up and down from the floor, and travel. They are in their golden years of retirement and don't want to slow down. They are tired of dealing with stiffness in their knee if they've been sitting for awhile. They are tired with dull achy pain in their knee joint if they do too much. They want to get out as much of life as they can and they want to be pain-free! Does this sound like you? There are solutions to your problems.

Knee Osteoarthritis is 𝘿𝙚𝙛𝙞𝙣𝙚𝙙 𝙖𝙨: the inflammation and wearing away of the cartilage on the bones that form the knee joint.

active aging adult, knee pain, physical therapy

Typically you describe these symptoms:

  • Walking, climbing, or descending stairs, or moving from a sitting to standing position

  • Pain or stiffness after sitting with the knee bent or straight for a prolonged period of time

  • A feeling of popping, cracking, or grinding when moving the knee

  • Swelling following activity

  • Tenderness to touch along the knee joint

𝙈𝙖𝙞𝙣 𝙘𝙖𝙪𝙨𝙚:

Gradual degeneration of the joint, unknown exact cause!

𝗢𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗿 𝗰𝗼𝗻𝘁𝗿𝗶𝗯𝘂𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗳𝗮𝗰𝘁𝗼𝗿𝘀 𝗶𝗻𝗰𝗹𝘂𝗱𝗲:

  • Obesity

  • Previous trauma

  • Malpositioning of the joint

  • Age

𝙃𝙤𝙬 𝙘𝙖𝙣 𝙋𝙝𝙮𝙨𝙞𝙘𝙖𝙡 𝙏𝙝𝙚𝙧𝙖𝙥𝙮 𝙝𝙚𝙡𝙥?

  • Improve your range of motion: this helps you keep functioning by being able to bend your knee when going up or down stairs or getting down on the floor.

  • Strengthen your muscles in your knees, hips and lower leg: muscle strength protects your joint from further degeneration and helps you do your daily activities easier.

  • Recommend bracing or other activity modifications to keep you as active as possible: Staying active is important and bracing or taping may help offload your knee joint to allow you to keep moving.

  • Hands-on therapy to reduce your pain: manual therapy including mobilizing your joint, stretching your knee and/or hip and ankle, improving your soft tissue mobility and dry needling can be very effective.

manual stretching, joint mobilizations, knee pain, knee OA, knee osteoarthritis, physical therapy, knee pain relief
Knee Joint Mobilizations to Improve Motion

If you have had worsening knee pain for several months that is not responding to rest or a change in activity, it is best to seek the advice of a medical provider.

Contact Engage Health + PT today and talk to a physical therapist who can evaluate you and recommend specific exercises for you and help you eliminate your pain quickly.

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