What are the Common Causes of Joint Pain

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Inflammation, discomfort, and pain that is felt on any part of the joint (muscles, tendons, ligaments, and bone) is generally referred to as joint pain.
Oftentimes, joint pain is also the common tern given to arthralgia or arthritis—a condition characterized by pain and inflammation from within the joint.
Pain associated with joint pain can be severe or mild (where soreness is only experienced after an activity).
In severe cases of pain in the joint, even the slightest of movement can already cause excruciating pain.
Causes
Joint pain can be attributed to a lot of possible causes, including:
• Polymyalgia rheumatic
• Septic arthritis
• Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis
• Complex regional pain syndrome
• Reactive arthritis
• Tendinitis
• Sprains
• Rickets
• Osteoarthritis
• Sarcoidosis
• Reactive arthritis
• Septic arthritis
• Leukemia
• Bursitis
• Lupus
• Avascular necrosis
• Paget’s disease of the bone
• Meralgia paresthetica
• Gout
• Hyperthyroidism
• Dislocation
• Broken bone
• Bone cancer
• Adult Still’s disease
• Ankylosing spondylitis


Fortunately, in many cases, join pain is harmless and will respond very well to homecare treatments.
However, if the following symptoms will manifest, visiting the doctor would be recommended:
• Tenderness
• Swelling
• Redness
A visit to the doctor is also considered ideal if the joint pain resulted from injury and the following symptoms will develop:
• Sudden swelling
• Inability to use the affected joint
• Severe pain
• Deformity in the joint

Treatment

Before the doctor will decide on the best treatment intervention, they would first need to accurately diagnose the joint pain’s exact cause.
Regardless of the treatment approach chosen, the key goals are the same—minimize the inflammation, alleviate the pain, and preserve the joint’s function.
Some of the possible treatment options for joint pain include the following:
Medications
For moderate to severe joint pains with swelling, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs (naproxen, aspirin, and ibuprofen) and over-the-counter painkillers might be prescribed.
Taking OTC medications might not be recommended for those patients who are also avid alcohol drinkers as it might lead to liver damage.
If pain is severe and will not respond to NSAIDs, a strong opioid medication will most likely be recommended.
However, since opioid drugs can cause drowsiness, it is best taken only upon the recommendation of the doctor.
Constipation is yet another likely side effect of taking opioid medication.
Fortunately, it can be remedied using laxatives.
Other medications that can help ease joint pain include:
• Antidepressant and antiepileptic drugs – these drugs work by interfering with the pain signals.
• Muscle relaxants – they work by combating muscle spasms. In some cases, muscle relaxants are taken with NSAIDs in order to maximize pain relief.

Physical Therapy

The expertise and guidance of a physical therapist can also work wonders for those who are suffering from joint pain.

The therapist will make use of diverse techniques—ultrasound, manipulation, electrical nerve stimulation, cold and heat therapy, etc.—to stabilize the joint, improve the patient’s motion range, and strengthen the muscles.
For patients who are obese and are experiencing joint pain, losing the excess weight will be recommended to help lessen the strain and pressure placed on the joints.
Exercise that are low-impact like bicycling and swimming are recommended so the joint is not irritated further.

Injections

Pain in the joint that will not respond to topical or oral medications will be treated using steroid medication.
Together with a local anesthetic, the steroid medication will be injected directly into the joint.
Injection will be done every 3 to 4 months.
Steroid injection is often the recommended treatment intervention for those who have joint disease, tendinitis, and arthritis.

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