Running is a very healthy exercise as it helps you get relief from stress. On the downside, it can take a toll on your knees. The knee functions like the hinge of a door; it’s connected by a network of bones, ligaments, muscles and tendons. When these connective tissues are overused and injured, they become inflamed and trigger knee pain. With time, knee pain can turn out to be severe without proper treatment. While many seek medical care when the pain becomes severe, we usually take longer to address when the knee pain is milder or moderate. For this reason, you’re strongly advised to visit an orthotics clinic in Mandurah as soon as you feel your knee hurting while walking or running.
Knee pain is very challenging as it interferes with your daily activities and restricts your movement. The symptoms of knee injuries can be confusing. Hence, it’s better to consult a sports podiatrist to know what’s the reason for your knee pain.
In this blog, we’ll discuss some of the most common knee injuries and what to do about them.
1. Runner’s knee:
It is a common overuse injury that’s prevalent among 30% of women and 25% of men. Also referred to as patellofemoral pain syndrome, the cartilage in the kneecap is inflamed in this type of knee injury. For this reason, the person experiences pain in the knee while bending, running, squatting or even sitting for a long time. If there’s mild to moderate pain in your knee, you can do the following things to alleviate pain:
- Stop running for a few weeks
- Keep your knee elevated as much as possible
- Use an ice pack over the affected area of the knee
- If you need to stay active, try swimming or other low-impact activity
2. Iliotibial band syndrome:
A study has revealed that this type of overuse injury affects 12% of people. In this condition, the tendon connecting your hip to the external knee becomes constricted and aggravates the outer knee area resulting in pain. A sudden increase in running distance and speed is likely to cause Iliotibial (IT) band syndrome. Besides taking a break from running and resting your feet, using an ice pack can also help in allaying the pain. If extreme pain persists, visit experienced podiatrists in Mandurah who’ll prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs, provide custom foot orthotics and other treatments to treat the condition.
3. Jumper’s knee:
If a tendon is overworked, it can thicken than usual. Pain is typically experienced in the front of the knee. Like other overuse knee injuries, if you’re having jumper’s knee, performing squats or jumps can be painful. Affecting both men and women, Jumper’s knee usually begins during the adolescent or early adulthood stage.
Jumper’s knee can become severe when left untreated for a long time. Hence, it’s advisable to visit an orthotics clinic in Mandurah for specialized treatment. The podiatrist will evaluate your running mechanics and recommend strengthening exercises to prevent re-injury.
Causes of Overuse Injuries
The human body is designed to adapt to varying degrees of physical stress. The muscles, tendons and ligaments work collectively to support our exercise and activity and this function is referred to as remodelling. In this process, the tissues break down and build up in a balanced way. However, if the tissues disintegrate more rapidly than regeneration, it leads to an overuse injury.
Different factors are responsible for an overuse injury. These include ill fitted footwear, inappropriate training programs and unsuitable training surfaces.
Abnormal alignment of the lower leg and foot is also a reason behind knee pain. For example, people with flat feet and high arches are more prone to having knee pain. Flat feet cause excessive internal rotation of the lower leg and the upper leg also rotates in the reverse direction due to the forces produced when running or walking. The knee must absorb the twisting forces which can cause injury for additional strain or force.
High-arched feet restrict normal knee flexure while walking. This type of foot structure comes with a forefoot valgus that alters the ankle and knee joint alignment. Addressing these abnormal foot and leg mechanisms can help reduce the risk of overuse injury.
How do podiatrists treat knee injuries?
Podiatrists at Peel Podiatry Clinic, the leading orthotics clinic in Mandurah, diagnose overuse knee injuries by modifying training schedule, suggesting R.I.C.E. (Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation), providing custom foot orthotics and prescribing strengthening exercises for the knee, among others. So, why deprive yourself of an active lifestyle when the knee pain can be addressed? To book an appointment, visit us today.