Running Woes: How to Recover from a Sprained Knee and More

Maybe you stepped on a sewer grate while running? Perhaps you came down on someone else’s foot while playing basketball? Whatever the case may be, you’re dealing with a sprained knee.

Now, you’re doing everything in your power to return to full strength. The only problem is, you’re not sure of what it takes to recover from a knee sprain.

That’s where this article comes in. Below, we’re not only going to tell you how to recover from a sprained knee, but we’re also going to provide you with a wealth of other relevant information. Let’s go!

What Is a Sprained Knee?

“Sprained knee” is the term used to describe the overstretching or tear of ligaments which connect the thigh and shin bones. A painful condition, it comes in many severities. When severe, it can lead to long-term health issues, and arthritis, in particular.

There are four ligaments in the knee, all of which can be overstretched or torn. These include the anterior cruciate ligament, the posterior cruciate ligament, the lateral collateral ligament, and the medial collateral ligament.

Common Symptoms of a Sprained Knee

There are several symptoms of a sprained knee. The most prominent of these symptoms include the following.

Stiffness

One of the most common symptoms of a knee strain is stiffness. If you have trouble straightening or bending at your knee, there’s a fairly good chance that you’ve strained it.

Swelling

While it’s not always present with a strained knee, swelling is fairly common. Of course, swelling could be indicative of a number of other problems as well, so you have to think critically.

If the swelling is mild, a sprained knee should be assumed. On the other hand, if the swelling is severe, you could be experiencing a full ligament tear.

Weakness

Another sign of a knee sprain is general weakness. If you have trouble placing weight on your knee, there’s a good chance that it’s sprained. Again, however, there could also be more severe problems present.

Bruising

In some cases, a sprained knee will be accompanied by bruising. However, if the bruising is extreme, you’re likely dealing with a more serious issue than a sprained knee. A trip to the doctor would be warranted.

Pain

The most common of sprained knee symptoms is pain. When you sprain your knee, you will experience physical discomfort, usually on the mild to moderate part of the spectrum.

How to Recover from a Sprained Knee

Recovering from a sprained knee isn’t always easy. However, with a lot of hard work and dedication, full recovery is likely. The components of recovery include the following.

Diagnosis

In most cases, when you have a sprained knee, you’re advised to schedule a doctor’s appointment so that you can receive a formal diagnosis. During your appointment, your doctor will test your knee in a number of ways, comparing it against your uninjured knee. Not only will your doctor carry out physical tests, but x-rays and other imaging tests as well.

He or she will also try to get a feel for the nature of your injury, inquiring as to what you were doing when you were injured and how severe the pain associated with your injury is.

Then, your doctor will rate the severity of your injury, giving it a 1, 2, or 3 rating. While a 1 rating indicates an overstretched ligament, a 2 indicates a partially torn ligament, and a 3 indicates a fully torn ligament.

Pain Relief

Regardless of the severity of your injury, you will be advised to institute some pain relief measures. These will help to stave off discomfort while your knee heals, allowing you to live a fairly productive life.

In many cases of a sprained knee, doctors will prescribe over-the-counter pain medication. However, this isn’t a certainty. If you’re not prescribed medication, you’re advised to take something such as ibuprofen or Tylenol.

Other pain relief measures include applying ice and heat to the affected area. You might also consider wearing a compression band over the sprained knee.

Rest

One of the most vital parts of recovery will be rest. You need to keep activity to a minimum, as you need to remove as much stress from your knee as possible.

Sit or lay down when you can, and, when sleeping, consider raising the affected knee slightly. Raising your knee will help to reduce swelling, allowing it to heal and curbing some of the pain.

In some cases, patients will be advised to wear braces such as the ones found on this website. Braces prevent the ligaments from stretching too far, allowing them to heal.

Exercise

To return your knee to its optimal state, you might have to engage in some specific exercises. These exercises will strengthen not only the muscles around the knee but the ligaments around the knee as well.

Common exercises for sprained knee recovery include but aren’t limited to leg lifts, calf stretches, thigh stretches, hamstring curls, and knee bends. To spur on recovery, you’ll have to perform these exercises on a regular basis.

Surgery

In cases of a severe sprain, surgery will be required. However, this is only necessary when the ligament is torn.

During the procedure, small holes will be drilled into the bones around the knee. Then, the surgeon will take the severed ligaments and reattach them. In some cases, grafts will be needed.

If you do undergo surgery, you will be out of commission for a few months. While you may be able to work, you won’t be able to engage in physical activity.

On the Search for More Health Tips?

Now that you know how to nurse that sprained knee, you might be searching for more health tips. If so, you’re in the right place. We have you covered.

Our site contains info on everything from fitness to health to dieting to medication and more. Browse some more of our articles now!

Why try dry needling for pain relief?

Dry needling, also known by Intramuscular Manual Therapy is one of the efficient neurophysiological treatment used to relieving pain. In the procedure, a needle is inserted into the skin to the myofascial trigger points. The myofascial trigger points usually have a number of knots, which are responsible for the pain cycle of the body.

When the needle is inserted in the knot, they are released and the pain is relieved. It is very necessary to get dry needling done from any professional to avoid the risk of any potential damage. Most of the times, people suffering from extreme pain undergo dry needling physical therapy.

How does dry needling work?

The process of dry needling is unknown. However, the procedure does work on some biochemical effects. When the injections are given to release the knots, it leads to a biochemical reaction which has a positive impact.

The biochemical reaction further helps in easing the pain. Moreover, you should also keep a check on the local twitch responses or the spinal cord reflexes. If you get the twitch responses with the dry needling response, you will be able to get over the pain.

Why should you try dry needling therapy?

If you are suffering from chronic pain, you should definitely try dry needling, as it will help in relieving a lot of stress. Some of the prominent reasons for trying dry needling treatment include the following:

Relaxes the muscle

Usually, our body muscles if inactive for a long time tend to become tight. These tight muscles are known as knots or trigger point. Therefore, dry needling physical therapy can help to loosen these knots and calm them down. Basically, it brings back the normal length of the tight muscles.

Relieves pain and releases neurotransmitter

Dry needling calms the body and encourages it to release opiate peptides such as dynorphins, enkephalins, and beta-endorphins. The neurotransmitters further help to prevent the pain signals, which reach out to the brain or spinal cord. Therefore there are very fewer chances of pain occurring again.

Enhanced blood flow

The tight muscles can cause extreme pain in certain parts of the body. Dry needling physical therapy finds the trigger point and releases them. It works in the method of the ultra-thin acupuncture. Since it relaxes the muscles, it contributes towards making the blood flow of the body smooth.

Treats chronic pain

Dry needling treatment is known to treat acute as well as chronic pain. However, it is one long treatment which needs to operate on a long-term basis. Dry needling can help to treat various and different conditions such as back pain, neck pain, sciatica, plantar fasciitis and even more.

Encourages movement

If you have a problem in moving, dry needling physical therapy can be of great help. Although it isn’t the same as that of acupuncture, it can work in similar ways. It is also known to enhance the range of motion in people. Since dry needling helps to release the trigger point and improve the blood flow it helps in moving. Moreover, it can also help in lowering the pain of the body.

What problems can be treated by dry needling?

Dry needling Atlanta is known to treat various musculoskeletal problems. The major factors that increase the symptoms of pain are the muscles and myofascial pain. It can treat various acute and chronic conditions such as arm pain, back and shoulder pain, neck pain, tennis elbow, carpal tunnel.

In some cases, dry needling physical therapy can also treat stress and migraine. Apart from these, it also treats buttock pain, jaw pain and various leg pains such as calf spasms, sciatica, and hamstrings strains.

How long does it take to work?

Dry needling treatment takes a long time to work. Therefore, you will need to make various visits to your doctor to see the effect. It causes both mechanical and biochemical changes to the body for better convenience.

If you have been suffering from chronic pain, you can consider going from dry needling physical therapy. Although you may feel comfortable after some treatments, you should keep a check on it. The musculoskeletal systems are constantly affected by gravity, therefore the chances of pain reoccurring are high.