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If I have right knee osteoarthritis, do I have to work out my left side as well?
I was recently asked by a patient why he had to work out both sides of his body in physical therapy if only his right knee hurt. I can understand some of the confusion. After all, if your right shoulder were painful and inflamed and required an injection, the medication would only be put at the site of inflammation -- in your right shoulder. You would not be a candidate for a right and a left shoulder injection! However, physical therapy, for the most part, is much different. I'll explain.
There are two basic components to physical therapy -- passive and active. In the passive component, the therapist may apply ice, heat, ultrasound, electrical stimulation, and other modalities to the painful area. For the most part, these modalities are only placed at the site of injury (there are a few exceptions that are beyond the scope of this blog). So, in this sense, physical therapy is functioning si...
A couple of months ago, I had coffee with a friend who had just started an exercise program. She would grimace anytime she got up, obviously her muscles and joints rebelling against her new regimen. To ease the pain, many people would use the heating bad, a massage or a hot bath with lots of Epsom salts. Those all are great ways to ease the discomfort, but there are other options you can use as well.
For instance, your dietary choices can make a big difference! “Food works on a cellular level, so you might not notice a difference in the first hour after eating them,” Jessica Crandall, a Denver dietitian and member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, told The Wall Street Journal . However, some foods can decrease muscle inflammation and can help you recover. These foods and beverages include:
Omega-3 fatty acids - The University of Maryland Medical Center reports that eating foods with omega-3 fatty acids help to reduce inflammation. The George Mateljan Foundation poi...
Alternative Names Muscle pain; Myalgia; Pain - muscles Home Care For muscle pain from overuse or injury, rest that body part and take acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Apply ice for the first 24 - 72 hours of an injury to reduce pain and inflammation. After that, heat often feels more soothing. Muscle aches from overuse and fibromyalgia often respond well to massage. Gentle stretching exercises after a long rest period are also helpful. Regular exercise can help restore proper muscle tone. Walking, cycling, and swimming are good aerobic activities to try. A physical therapist can teach you stretching, toning, and aerobic exercises to feel better and stay pain-free. Begin slowly and increase workouts gradually. Avoid high-impact aerobic activities and weight lifting when injured or while in pain. Be sure to get plenty of sleep and try to reduce stress. Yoga and meditation are excellent ways to help you sleep and relax. If home measures aren't working, call your doctor, who will consider prescriptio...
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