Here's How Physical Therapy Helps Your Joint Pain

Dec 08, 2023
misc image
Joint pain tends to develop over time, with symptoms that can range from mild to severe. Physical therapy is a holistic approach to pain management focused on helping your body adapt and restore joint function. Here’s how it could help you.

Joint pain is exceptionally common — so common, in fact, that millions of Americans live with its effects every day. As we get older, that prevalence increases, largely due to arthritis and years of wear and tear on our joint components.

While medications are one option for managing joint pain and providing relief, they’re not always effective. They also come with their own potential side effects, like gastrointestinal (GI) issues and sleep disruptions. Physical therapy offers an alternative solution that works with your body’s natural healing abilities, and it combines well with other therapies, too.

Offering island-wide care through our locations in Kihei, Kahului, and Lahaina, Hawaii, Minit Medical Urgent Care and Physical Therapy helps women and men attain long-lasting relief from chronic joint pain with comprehensive, individually-tailored physical therapy plans. If you have ongoing or recurrent joint pain, here’s how physical therapy with our expert team can help.

Why joint pain happens

Joints occur where two or more bones meet. Joint pain usually happens when one or more joint components are damaged by repetitive use, trauma, infection, or even a prior surgery.

Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common cause of joint pain, typically developing as a result of years of wear and tear on the joint surfaces. Over time, that wear and tear damages the cartilage layer that protects the surfaces of joints, leading to inflammation, pain, and stiffness. Other types of arthritis (i.e., rheumatoid arthritis) are triggered by autoimmune reactions.

Joint pain can also be related to problems affecting the ligaments or tendons that surround your joints, or, it can be caused by bursitis, an inflammatory condition that affects tiny sacs of fluid called bursae that surround and cushion your joint. 

Fortunately, most types of joint pain respond very well to physical therapy, helping to alleviate pain while improving overall joint function and mobility.

Physical therapy for joint pain

If you have joint pain, moving your joints may seem like the last thing you want to do. But remember, joints are designed to move, and having physical therapy tailored to your joints’ needs can actually improve joint function over time.

Physical therapy uses exercises and guided movements to improve joint flexibility while gradually reducing painful inflammation. Therapeutic activities focus on strengthening the muscles surrounding the joint to reduce strain. 

At the same time, gentle stretches and targeted movements improve circulation around the joint, delivering oxygen and essential nutrients necessary for healing. Improved blood flow also removes irritating toxins produced by the inflammatory process.

Importantly, physical therapy is completely customizable. Regular sessions with your therapist ensure your treatment plan changes as your needs evolve, and at-home exercises maintain those benefits for faster relief. We can also tailor your treatment to match the demands of your job, reducing discomfort at work as well as at home.

Help your joints feel better

Physical therapy uses a holistic approach to relieve joint pain now, and help prevent it in the future. To learn how we can develop a therapy plan just for you, book an appointment online or over the phone with Minit Medical Urgent Care and Physical Therapy today.