Tips to Get Relief from Joint Pain at Home

Tips to Get Relief from Joint Pain at Home

April 30, 2019

Clinical Contributors to this story:
Michael Kelly, M.D.

By: Brittany Maynard

Suffering from joint pain is never easy, especially during these uncertain times. COVID-19 may have postponed your joint replacement surgery or physical therapy sessions, but there are still ways to help alleviate your pain. Many health care providers have implemented telemedicine services, so you can stay connected with your care team and discuss ways to manage your pain while awaiting surgery or in-person therapy.

Here is what you need to know about relieving your joint pain at home.

Non-surgical ways to relieve your pain

Ice, Heat and Rest: Apply ice to your joints to relieve pain and swelling. Ice the joint for 15 minutes several times a day. After a day or so, try a heating pad to address any muscle spasms around the joint. Rest the joint when needed and avoid activities that cause you pain as much as possible.

Physical therapy: Patients suffering from joint pain can benefit greatly from physical therapy. Though in-person appointments may not be an option right now, many physical therapists are offering telemedicine visits or home workout plans that provide a wide variety of ways to ease the pain, strengthen and stabilize the joint, and improve range of motion. Contact your physical therapist to see what options they provide.

Stay active: “It is important to keep your mobility and muscle strength,” said Michael Kelly, M.D., medical director of Orthopedics at Hackensack Meridian Health. “Choose a low- or moderate-impact exercise. Since access to pools and gyms aren’t an option right now, simply walking or doing exercises around the house can help you stay active.”

Over-the-Counter medication: Typically, it is safe to treat your pain with non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs), such as Aleve or Tylenol. Always be sure to check with your doctor first before starting any new medications.

Prescription medications: “When over-the-counter medications don’t relieve the pain, your orthopedist can prescribe something stronger,” says Dr. Kelly. “Offices are still taking calls or scheduling telemedicine visits, so be sure to talk with your doctor to determine the best option.”

Diet and vitamins

Supplements: Supplements, such as glucosamine and chondroitin, have been shown to reduce arthritic joint pain. “We need more studies to understand the true effectiveness of these supplements,” says Dr. Kelly, “but some patients say their pain improved after taking them. Also, if taken properly, they pose little harm to your health.”

Losing weight: Joint pain is common in people who are overweight, so losing weight could help relieve some of the pressure on your joints. Daily home exercises to lose weight and proper diet are key but be sure to work out without stressing your joints too much. Unsure where to start? Call your orthopedic office about a conditioning program and check out how to prevent over eating while working at home.

Stay in contact

It is important to stay in contact with your orthopedic office, especially if you were scheduled for surgery or a procedure prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. “We are here to help,” says Dr. Kelly. “Physicians will work with you to recommend the best pain management option currently available, and some necessary treatments are still offered in the office setting, with special safety measures in place. Additionally, keeping in contact is important so the office can update you on the status of your procedure or surgery when business returns to normal.”

Next Steps & Resources:

The material provided through HealthU is intended to be used as general information only and should not replace the advice of your physician. Always consult your physician for individual care.

Share
For More Information
How Healthy are Your Hips and Knees?

Take an online joint pain assessment

Health Risk Assessment
How to Avoid Overeating While Working from Home

Keeping your nutrition in check while working from home can be tough. Unlike at the office, one major work-from-home distraction continues to be the refrigerator.

Can COVID Cause Pain in Your Knees, Hips & Other Joints?

While COVID-19 is characterized by a variety of symptoms, many common to respiratory illness, some COVID-19 patients have complained of joint pain. Our expert explains what the research says and how to find relief.

How to Relieve Knee Pain Triggered by Everyday Activities

It’s not just vigorous movements that can produce knee pain, but everyday activities as well.

4 Options To Help Alleviate Back Pain Without Surgery

Did you know that back pain is the single leading cause of disability worldwide, preventing many people from engaging in work and other everyday activities?

Do Over-the-Counter Knee Braces Help?

Knee pain from injuries or arthritis isn’t one-size-fits-all. 

Are All Of My Devices Giving Me Wrist Pain?

Ever wonder if all that typing, texting, swiping and scrolling is making your hands and wrists hurt? Yes. Yes, it is.

X
We use cookies to improve your site experience. By using this site,
you agree to our Terms & Conditions. Also, please read our Privacy Policy.
Accept All Cookies