Without joints, your body wouldn’t be able to move. When joints work properly, you experience pain-free motion. But when they don’t, they can cause discomfort and immobility. The joint – as well as the surrounding muscles, cartilage and connective tissue, including ligaments and tendons – can all be affected by joint dysfunction.
Joints normally let you know when something is wrong. These areas may swell or appear red or feel warm to the touch. You may notice that you can’t do as many things as you did before due to joint stiffness or pain. But what exactly causes joint pain? Here, we take a look at a few of the causes and treatments of joint pain.
What Causes Joint Pain?
Joint pain can be caused by several different conditions and can be acute (short-term) or chronic (long-term), depending on the nature of the damage. A few of the causes of joint pain include:
- Arthritis. Involving swelling or stiffness around a joint, arthritis can be painful and may be caused by wear and tear, overuse or an injury of the joint. There are different types of arthritis that may have different causes. Rheumatoid arthritis, for example, is an autoimmune disorder in which the body’s immune system attacks healthy joints.
- Injury. An injury to a joint can cause both acute and chronic pain and even accelerate arthritis to degenerate the joint.
- Bursitis. Your joint is surrounded by bursae, which are small sacs of fluid that help cushion the joint. When these small pad-like structures become inflamed, it’s called bursitis.
- Tumors. Although much less common than inflammation and injury, benign or malignant tumors around the joint can happen, causing discomfort and restricting mobility.
Generally, the only way to know for sure what’s causing your joint pain is by having a physician conduct diagnostic testing.
Treatment Options for Joint Pain
Treatment for your joint pain will depend on the cause, which makes a proper diagnosis so important. While medication such as anti-inflammatories and muscle relaxants can help some people, others may need steroid injections to give them long-term pain relief without the side effects of medication.
Physical therapy is another option to help improve your joint pain, as it helps strengthen the muscles that support the joint and improve your range of motion. A custom treatment plan is essential for finding pain relief when you have chronic joint discomfort or facet joint syndrome symptoms.
Let Us Help You Improve Your Joint Discomfort
If you’re suffering from joint pain and have tried other forms of treatment without success, it could be time to consider advanced therapies from our board-certified professionals at Summit Spine & Joint. Whether you’re experiencing facet joint syndrome symptoms or have arthritis, we’re here to help. Call us at (770) 250-4020 or contact us via our online form.