Knee Pain: Causes and Home Remedies

Our knees suffer from holding the weight of our entire body and can be affected by overloading or brisk movements. Knee pain, which can be acute, may be caused by a recent, chronic or poorly-healed injury, or other health problems.

Below we are going to explain more about the possible causes of knee pain as well as share some of the best home remedies to alleviate it with natural ingredients such as medicinal plants, oils, or even vegetables.

Possible causes

Let’s go over a few of the most common causes of knee pain:

  • Arthritis: inflammation of the joints
  • Bursitis: Inflammation caused by overloading or continual tension on the knees.
  • Tendinitis: Inflammation of the tendons that could be caused by running, jumping, or walking quickly.  Tendinitis of the knee can increase risk of tendon tears.
  • Ligament injury or tear:  usually heard as a crunching or rip and an acute pain.
  • Meniscus injury: usually caused by an abrupt knee turn and causes a diffuse pain that could appear immediately or even days afterward.
  • Muscle sprain or strain: also a ligament injury, but less serious.  Caused by twisting.
  • Baker’s cyst: in this case there is also swelling, due to fluid accumulation.

Become an athleteWhenever you suffer from chronic knee pain without being able to identify any sort of specific injury, you should know that, according to Traditional Chinese Medicine, the knees are related to the kidneys.  So if you suffer from some sort of problem or pain you should also treat kidney health.  When your kidneys functions correctly your knee discomforts might just disappear.

What should I do?

  • If you’ve had some sort of acute injury the first thing you need to do is avoid moving the area, apply cold and rest.  Go to your primary care physician so they can perform pertinent test, as well as a diagnostic.
  • If you’ve had the problem for a long time, or if it is chronic, or if it appears for no particular cause or injury, you should also see a physical therapist or a professional osteopathy.  We also especially recommend going to a therapist that performs the kinesio taping technique, which is based in using colored elastic adhesive tape, that a lot of professional athletes use with incredible results.

We are also going look at a few of the best natural and home remedies for alleviating and curing knee pain.

Cabbage compresses

Cabbage is an excellent anti-inflammatory food.  To prepare a cabbage compress, use green cabbage.  Place the leaves in boiling water for a few minutes.  Then rub them a bit to remove excess juice.  Place them directly on your inflamed knee and cover with a cloth.  Place aluminum foil or plastic wrap over top.  Let set for 30 minutes or more.

Massage oils

According to the temperature of your knee, prepare a therapeutic home remedy that can be applied daily to bring heat to the area, or to cool it off.

  • If the area is inflamed, red, and the skin is warm: 50 ml of almond oil + 15 drops of essential mint oil
  • If you have pain but the area is cold: sesame or olive oil + 15 drops essential ginger oil.

Hypericum oil

A very therapeutic oil that you can make yourself that has properties to improve circulation (also useful for contusions, burns, healing, etc.) and that also functions as a natural antidepressant.

Steep fresh hypericum flowers in olive oil for 30 days, in an open container.  The oil will turn red.  Apply it two or three times a day to the knee, gently massaging the area.

Arnica treatment

Arnica is possibly the best known remedy among athletes and people that suffer from inflammation due to its wide use in natural medicine and homeopathy for its anti-inflammatory strength.  This plant can be found in creams or gels in herb stores and pharmacies.

If you decide to use homeopathy, which could be perfectly combined with applying the cream, this remedy is called Arnica Montana 9 CH, and you should place 3 balls under your tongue 3 times a day.  Separate between meals, beverages, and strong or minty flavors (gum, toothpaste, etc.)

arnica-giorgioPhotos courtesy of ponte1112 and giorgio