Runner’s knee, also medically known as patellofemoral pain syndrome, is a broad term used to describe severe knee pain. It is called as runner’s knee or jumper’s knee because it is common in people who participate in sports but this can occur in non-athletes also. A person with patellofemoral pain syndrome will find it difficult to climb stairs, kneel down and perform other activities due to the pain and stiffness in the knee. The important factors that contribute to this syndrome are the alignment of the kneecap, overdoing of vigorous athletics or training. In various cases, patellofemoral pain syndrome is caused by vigorous physical activities and applying pressure continuously on the knee such as jogging, squatting and climbing stairs. Other factors which contribute to patellofemoral pain are the use of improper sports training techniques or equipment and changes in footwear or playing surface.
6 NATURAL REMEDIES FOR RUNNER’S KNEE
- REST YOUR KNEE – One should decrease the load and pressure given to the patellofemoral joint or the joint formed by your thigh bone and knee cap to reduce pain. Hence, one should avoid engaging in any activity that may cause pain. Resistance training exercises and high impact exercises should be strictly avoided.
- APPLY ICE PACKS – Ice packs reduce the inflammation and provide temporary relief from pain. It is recommended to apply an icepack to your knee for about 15 to 20 minutes every two to three hours. It is to be noted that ice should not be directly applied to the skin, it should be wrapped in a towel and applied inorder to avoid getting an ice burn.
- HAVE GINGER OR TURMERIC FOR PAIN RELIEF – If the application of ice does not relieve the pain, it is suggested to use non-steroidal inflammatory drugs. Ginger or turmeric could be a natural alternative because these herbs have anti-inflammatory properties.
- GET PHYSICAL THERAPY – Physical therapy is effective in treating patellofemoral pain syndrome. Since the quadriceps is directly involved in the movement of the kneecap, a workout plan should be designed to focus on strengthening the quadriceps. One’s physical therapist should design a personalized program that addresses the problems identified during the physical examination.
- USE SHOE ORTHOSIS LIKE INSOLES OR ARCH SUPPORTS – Orthotic inserts provide additional arch support when one rolls their feet inward. Recent studies have shown that the use of insoles or arch support helps certain people with patellofemoral pain syndrome.
- GO FOR PATELLAR TAPING OR BRACING – A physical therapist may use tape to bind it or advise a knee brace to keep your kneecap in place. The taping and bracing techniques provide support to your kneecap and lower the load and pressure exerted on it. However, research has shown that one should exercise and adopt other curative methods as well along with these contraptions for greater effectiveness.
A combination of the above mentioned remedies could be adopted to effectively reduce the pain in the knees. However, if the pain worsens, it is always advised to seek professional medical help as soon as possible.