Bothersome Knees? Try these.
According to the Mayo Clinic, "Knee pain is a common complaint that affects people of all ages. Knee pain may be the result of an injury, such as a ruptured ligament or torn cartilage. Medical conditions — including arthritis, gout and infections — also can cause knee pain."
WebMD goes further to say "injuries can happen, and they often involve the knees.
Some of the most common problems are sprained ligaments, meniscus tears, tendinitis, and runner's knee."
MedicineNet states, "Pain is a common knee problem that can originate in any of the bony structures compromising the knee joint (femur, tibia, fibula), the kneecap (patella), or the ligaments, tendons, and cartilage (meniscus) of the knee. Knee pain can be aggravated by physical activity, as well as obesity, affected by the surrounding muscles and their movements, and be triggered by other problems (such as a foot injury). Knee pain can affect people of all ages, and home remedies can be helpful unless it becomes severe."
For a sprain or strain, Heathline suggests "remember the acronym “RICE”:
Get off your feet and apply a cold compress or bag of ice to the knee. Frozen vegetables, such as peas, will also work if you have no ice handy.
Wrap your knee with a compression bandage to prevent swelling, but not so tightly it cuts off circulation. While you’re resting, keep your foot elevated."
Healthline also goes on to say that "In a 2011 study, researchers investigated the pain-relieving effects of a salve made of:
They found the salve was just as effective as over-the-counter arthritis creams containing salicylate, a topical pain-relief treatment. Some people find these types of remedies work, but there’s not enough evidence to prove that any herbal therapy has a significant impact on knee pain."
MedicalNewsToday writes that "In 2017, a study involving 570 people found evidence that acupuncture might help peopleTrusted Source with osteoarthritis in the knee.
Participants received either 23 true or 23 sham acupuncture sessions over 26 weeks, or 6 acupuncture sessions over 12 weeks.
Those who had true acupuncture scored higher in pain and function scores, compared with the others.
“Acupuncture seems to provide improvement in function and pain relief as an adjunctive therapy for osteoarthritis of the knee when compared with credible sham acupuncture and education control groups.”
The ACR and AFTrusted Source note that acupuncture may help ease pain."
In an article by Very Well Health, they present several natural remedies.
"Capsaicin Creams and Rubs
Capsaicin is the active ingredient in chili peppers that, when used in the form of ointments, lotions, and transdermal skin patches, can relieve pain. Capsaicin is the cause of the burning feeling you associate with chili peppers, and some research suggests that it depletes nerve cells of the chemicals that shoot pain messages to your brain.2
A 2014 report found consistent evidence that capsaicin treatments are effective for osteoarthritis pain relief.3 Capsaicin products only offer temporary relief, however. Some doctors recommend that it be applied multiple times per day. You should also test it out first on a small patch of skin to make sure you don't have an allergic reaction. Also, avoid applying capsaicin products on broken skin or open wounds.4
What to Know Before Using Capsaicin Cream
Natural supplements are another common way to alleviate the discomfort from knee pain.
Turmeric is a spice that has long been used in Ayurvedic medicine. While not much research is out there on its effectiveness in pain relief, one analysis showed it improved symptoms of osteoarthritis, but the authors pointed out that "more rigorous and larger studies are needed to confirm the therapeutic efficacy of turmeric for arthritis."8
Ginger has been shown to treat osteoarthritis and could potentially be a substitute for NSAIDs. In one study of 247 participants, knee pain was considerably reduced among 63% of those who were given therapeutic ginger products compared with 50% of those in the placebo group.9
One 2018 review found that vitamin E supplements may be helpful for knee pain due to its antioxidant qualities.The authors concluded that "vitamin E may retard the progression of osteoarthritis by ameliorating oxidative stress and inflammation of the joint." However, they also cited that further studies are warranted.10
Research has been mixed on the pain-relieving effects of glucosamine and chondroitin supplements. One 2016 study of glucosamine and chondroitin looked at 164 people with knee pain from osteoarthritis.11 It actually stopped early because those on the supplement had worse symptoms than those who took the placebo version of the supplement. Be sure to consult your provider first before using this supplement to manage your osteoarthritis symptoms.12
Some research has shown that this common pain reliever may be helpful for knee pain. A study of 50 men and women from 40 to 76 years old showed that a 3 g twice-a-day dose of methylsulfonylmethane improved pain and physical knee function. The researchers said more studies on the supplement needs to be done.13
Essential oils refer to concentrated plant extracts that are distilled into oils, popularly used in modern alternative medicine, but that have been part of medicinal treatments for centuries. Essential oils are not regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), so anyone who uses them should proceed with caution. These oils are a key component of aromatherapy, in which the scents from these plant products have been shown to release signals to the brain to relieve pain, particularly when it comes to arthritis.5
A 2016 study examined how this kind of essential oil-based aromatherapy could impact pain from osteoarthritis of the knee. In one study, 90 people were randomly split into three groups: those who received an aromatherapy massage with lavender essential oil, a placebo group who received a massage with almond oil, and a control group without a massage. This essential oil therapy significantly reduced pain in people with knee osteoarthritis compared with the other two groups.6
Arnica is a popular example of an essential oil that has been used for pain relief. It's a plant found in both North America and Europe, and oils derived from it have been suggested to ease osteoarthritis pain.
What to Know About Essential Oils for Arthritis"
Woman's World specifically discusses orange essential oil, stating "Stiffness and pain in our knees or joints doesn’t have to stop us from enjoying the warm weather. Orange essential oil can work as a short-term natural remedy to nix that discomfort! A 2017 study published in the Indian Journal of Palliative Care found that using this oil during aromatherapy sessions for patients with fractured limbs (ouch!) helped to relieve pain.
Researchers credited the oils active substances: limonene and flanders citral (also known as levomenthol). These natural chemicals carry anti-inflammatory properties that are able to relieve pain. Similarly, another study published in Complementary Therapies in Medicine supported orange essential oil’s pain-relieving benefits when massaged into the knees of older adults to reduce stiffness over a three week period.
Orange essential oil is not only great for topical use, but its scent can also ease stress. Research published in Complementary Therapies in Medicine looked at how spraying this oil into the air daily can have positive effects on certain parts of the brain, such as the prefrontal cortex — which affects our mood.
Researchers concluded that the orange oil induced olfactory stimulation. This process occurs when sensory cells in our nose, mouth, and throat send messages to our brain to help us interpret those smells. The oil was ultimately found to increase the participants’ feelings of comfort and relaxation.
For everyday pain-relief use, mixing a few drops of orange essential oil with coconut oil or olive oil before messaging on to skin works to balance out the intensity of oil so that it’s gentler for your skin to absorb. Plus, it doubles as a natural fragrance that’s way cheaper than other perfumes we tend to buy!
Placing several drops in an essential oil diffuser will help with soothing stress and feeling relaxed. Guests will also always feel at ease as they hang out at your house with its mood-boost benefits.
It’s clear that orange essential oil can help with so many parts of our lives — and with a vibrant fruity scent that’s perfect for summer!"
Smelling, as described above, can even work with certain spices and plants. Dr. Neel Amin recommends "Breath in fragrant spices.
Pleasant aromas like lavender can alter the perception of pain, studies show. Japanese researchers found that lavender reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which can make you feel relaxed and less aware of pain.
But lavender isn’t the only pleasant aroma that works as a natural home remedy for arthritis pain relief. Korean researchers found that arthritis patients experienced less pain and were less depressed when they were exposed to the aromas of a variety of kitchen spices, including marjoram, rosemary, and peppermint.
For a pain-soothing aromatherapy treatment, add a teaspoon of one of these dried herbs to a quarter-cup of olive, coconut, or vegetable oil. Take a whiff periodically."
Using a hot Castor Oil can provide pain relief as set forth in an article by StyleCraze. They suggest "You can apply a bit of hot castor oil directly to the knee joint and leave it on for maximum benefits, or you can make a castor oil pack.
Let’s look at what we need for a castor oil pack and how to go about making one!
High-quality castor oil (preferably pale yellow cold-pressed oil)
A heating pad or a hot water bottle
Plastic wrap, cellophane tape, plastic sheet, cling film or an empty bin-liner.
Three ‘1 square foot’ pieces of cotton or wool, or a piece large enough to cover the knee.
An old towel.
How To Prepare:
Take the cloth and soak it in hot water.
Pour some castor oil on it, but make sure the oil is not dripping from the cloth.
Position the cloth on the sore knee, wrap it up with the cling film to hold it in place.
Consider wrapping cellophane to prevent oil from spilling on to the sheets. Alternatively, consider using the old towel to prevent oil spills.
Leave on for 6 to 7 hours.
This castor oil wrap for knee pain will provide long lasting relief. Soon, knee pain won’t be slowing you down any longer
Acupressure has also yielded good results for knee issues.See the Qigong for Knee Pain and Knee Acupoint Exercises in the Handouts section of this website.
Hopefully through trial and error you can find the natural remedy that works best for you so you can get outside this Summer and enjoy all that nature has to offer.