How to Get Rid of Joint Pain and Stiffness

Danh NgoArthritis, Holistic Medicine Division, Pain Relief Division

About one in five American adults experience chronic pain. That’s about 50.2 million people across the US. Lost productivity due to chronic pain has reached $300 billion annually, too.

In fact, chronic pain is now among the most common chronic conditions in the company. If you’re struggling with joint pain and stiffness, you’re not alone.

You don’t have to keep living with your joint problems, though. Instead, read on to discover what causes joint pain and stiffness. Then, use the tips we’ve included below to ease your pain. 

Understanding the root cause of your symptoms can help you choose the right treatment options.

Read on to learn more about stiff joints today. 

What Causes Joint Pain and Stiffness?

It’s common for people to develop stiff joints as they get older. After all, time can take its toll on our bones, muscles, and joints. 

You might first notice your joint stiffness upon waking up. Lying down for hours at a time to sleep reduces fluid in the body. Joints could have a difficult time moving as a result. 

You might first notice your joint pain and stiffness feels mild. Symptoms might only impact your mobility in the morning. You could notice symptoms flare up after you’ve remained seated for a period, too.

In time, however, stiffness can have a bigger impact on your mobility and well-being.

In addition to joint stiffness, you could experience inflammation as well. Inflammation is the body’s response to illness, disease, or injury. Too much inflammation can cause pain to flare. 

In some cases, however, joint stiffness isn’t the result of getting older. It’s possible you have an underlying condition like bursitis, lupus, or arthritis. Lifestyle factors, including your weight and diet, can also have an impact.

What causes joint pain and stiffness, exactly? Here are a few conditions that might cause your symptoms. 

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)

By 2040, as many as 78 million US adults could have doctor-diagnosed arthritis. That’s 26% of the country’s population.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is one of the most common reasons people develop stiff joints. It’s one of the most common forms of arthritis. You could experience symptoms between the ages of 30 and 60.

Also an autoimmune disease, this chronic inflammatory disorder occurs when the immune system attacks healthy parts of the body. Bone erosion and joint deformity can occur over time. Pain, inflammation, and joint stiffness are all common symptoms.

There’s currently no cure for RA. Instead, you’ll need to maintain symptoms through medication and other treatments. 

Osteoarthritis (OA)

Osteoarthritis is another form of arthritis. It commonly affects people over the age of 65.

OA occurs due to wear and tear on the joints.

Your cartilage, which protects the bones in the joints, can wear away with time and use. When cartilage can no longer protect bones, pain and swelling can occur. Cracking sounds when the joint is in motion can occur, too.

OA can affect different joints, though usually, it impacts the:

  • Fingers
  • Neck
  • Hips
  • Knees
  • Back

Your bones could break as a result of OA. Treatment can help replace lost cartilage and fluid in the joints.

Reducing weight and pressure on the joints can help, too. In some cases, however, patients require joint replacement surgery.

Bursitis

The tiny, fluid-filled sacs in the body that cushion ligaments, bones, and muscles in the joints are called bursae. When the sacs become inflamed, you could develop bursitis.

Joint pain and stiffness can occur as a result. This condition usually affects the hip, shoulder, or elbow.

The condition is usually temporary. You might need to reduce your physical activity if symptoms occur, though. 

Lupus

Like RA, lupus is an autoimmune disease. The body could attack your joints, tissues, and organs. Swelling, pain, and joint stiffness could occur as a result.

The symptoms of lupus match symptoms for other conditions, though. As a result, it’s sometimes difficult to diagnose.

This condition is chronic and has no cure. 

Bone Cancer

If you’re experiencing stiffness and pain, make sure to visit your doctor. Bone cancer rarely causes these symptoms, but it is a possibility.

You might notice increased sensitivity and swelling near the bone, too. 

Gout

Gout symptoms can occur as you sleep. You might experience joint stiffness upon waking up as a result.

Gout is a type of arthritis that often affects women after menopause. 

Solutions

Now that we’ve discussed what causes joint pain and stiffness, let’s consider your treatment options. Here are a few treatments you can discuss with a specialist. 

Over-the-Counter Medications

Over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can help ease mild joint pain symptoms. For example, you could take naproxen, ibuprofen, or aspirin.

Make sure to consult a specialist before taking medications to avoid interactions. 

Steroids

Steroids could treat joint stiffness as well. They could help ease your inflammation and pain symptoms. 

Exercise

Try reducing your stiffness through exercise and physical therapy. Exercising and PT can improve your strength and flexibility. They can also help you maintain a healthy weight.

Otherwise, excess weight can increase your risk of conditions that might cause stiffness in the future. 

Hot or Cold Therapy

A hot or cold compress could ease your joint stiffness. Hold a bag of ice against the stiff joint for 15 minutes to ease inflammation and swelling.

You can also use a heating pad or take a warm bath to increase circulation and relax your muscles. 

Flaxseed

Flaxseed contains omega-3 fatty acids, which can ease symptoms of joint stiffness and inflammation. You can take flaxseed oil through capsules or in a bottle. 

Fish Oil Supplements

Talk to your doctor about natural remedies you can use to ease your joint problems. For example, fish oil might help reduce your joint stiffness and pain. 

Talk to a doctor to avoid interactions with other medications. 

Visit a Specialist

Schedule an appointment with a doctor right away if you experience:

  • Rapid swelling
  • An inability to move a joint
  • Intense redness
  • Skin that’s hot to the touch
  • Severe pain
  • Joint deformity

They’ll determine the underlying cause of your symptoms before determining a course of treatment. 

Joint Pain and Stiffness: You Guide to Keeping the Pain at Bay

You don’t have to live life with joint pain and stiffness. If these symptoms sound familiar, consider giving physical therapy a try. PT can improve your strength and reduce your likelihood of injuries. 

With help, you can improve your mobility and quality of life. 

Interested in physical therapy to reduce your joint stiffness? We can help.

Contact our team today to learn more. 

About one in five American adults experience chronic pain. That’s about 50.2 million people across the US. Lost productivity due to chronic pain has reached $300 billion annually, too.

In fact, chronic pain is now among the most common chronic conditions in the company. If you’re struggling with joint pain and stiffness, you’re not alone.

You don’t have to keep living with your joint problems, though. Instead, read on to discover what causes joint pain and stiffness. Then, use the tips we’ve included below to ease your pain. 

Understanding the root cause of your symptoms can help you choose the right treatment options.

Read on to learn more about stiff joints today. 

What Causes Joint Pain and Stiffness?

It’s common for people to develop stiff joints as they get older. After all, time can take its toll on our bones, muscles, and joints. 

You might first notice your joint stiffness upon waking up. Lying down for hours at a time to sleep reduces fluid in the body. Joints could have a difficult time moving as a result. 

You might first notice your joint pain and stiffness feels mild. Symptoms might only impact your mobility in the morning. You could notice symptoms flare up after you’ve remained seated for a period, too.

In time, however, stiffness can have a bigger impact on your mobility and well-being.

In addition to joint stiffness, you could experience inflammation as well. Inflammation is the body’s response to illness, disease, or injury. Too much inflammation can cause pain to flare. 

In some cases, however, joint stiffness isn’t the result of getting older. It’s possible you have an underlying condition like bursitis, lupus, or arthritis. Lifestyle factors, including your weight and diet, can also have an impact.

What causes joint pain and stiffness, exactly? Here are a few conditions that might cause your symptoms. 

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)

By 2040, as many as 78 million US adults could have doctor-diagnosed arthritis. That’s 26% of the country’s population.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is one of the most common reasons people develop stiff joints. It’s one of the most common forms of arthritis. You could experience symptoms between the ages of 30 and 60.

Also an autoimmune disease, this chronic inflammatory disorder occurs when the immune system attacks healthy parts of the body. Bone erosion and joint deformity can occur over time. Pain, inflammation, and joint stiffness are all common symptoms.

There’s currently no cure for RA. Instead, you’ll need to maintain symptoms through medication and other treatments. 

Osteoarthritis (OA)

Osteoarthritis is another form of arthritis. It commonly affects people over the age of 65.

OA occurs due to wear and tear on the joints.

Your cartilage, which protects the bones in the joints, can wear away with time and use. When cartilage can no longer protect bones, pain and swelling can occur. Cracking sounds when the joint is in motion can occur, too.

OA can affect different joints, though usually, it impacts the:

  • Fingers
  • Neck
  • Hips
  • Knees
  • Back

Your bones could break as a result of OA. Treatment can help replace lost cartilage and fluid in the joints.

Reducing weight and pressure on the joints can help, too. In some cases, however, patients require joint replacement surgery.

Bursitis

The tiny, fluid-filled sacs in the body that cushion ligaments, bones, and muscles in the joints are called bursae. When the sacs become inflamed, you could develop bursitis.

Joint pain and stiffness can occur as a result. This condition usually affects the hip, shoulder, or elbow.

The condition is usually temporary. You might need to reduce your physical activity if symptoms occur, though. 

Lupus

Like RA, lupus is an autoimmune disease. The body could attack your joints, tissues, and organs. Swelling, pain, and joint stiffness could occur as a result.

The symptoms of lupus match symptoms for other conditions, though. As a result, it’s sometimes difficult to diagnose.

This condition is chronic and has no cure. 

Bone Cancer

If you’re experiencing stiffness and pain, make sure to visit your doctor. Bone cancer rarely causes these symptoms, but it is a possibility.

You might notice increased sensitivity and swelling near the bone, too. 

Gout

Gout symptoms can occur as you sleep. You might experience joint stiffness upon waking up as a result.

Gout is a type of arthritis that often affects women after menopause. 

Solutions

Now that we’ve discussed what causes joint pain and stiffness, let’s consider your treatment options. Here are a few treatments you can discuss with a specialist. 

Over-the-Counter Medications

Over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can help ease mild joint pain symptoms. For example, you could take naproxen, ibuprofen, or aspirin.

Make sure to consult a specialist before taking medications to avoid interactions. 

Steroids

Steroids could treat joint stiffness as well. They could help ease your inflammation and pain symptoms. 

Exercise

Try reducing your stiffness through exercise and physical therapy. Exercising and PT can improve your strength and flexibility. They can also help you maintain a healthy weight.

Otherwise, excess weight can increase your risk of conditions that might cause stiffness in the future. 

Hot or Cold Therapy

A hot or cold compress could ease your joint stiffness. Hold a bag of ice against the stiff joint for 15 minutes to ease inflammation and swelling.

You can also use a heating pad or take a warm bath to increase circulation and relax your muscles. 

Flaxseed

Flaxseed contains omega-3 fatty acids, which can ease symptoms of joint stiffness and inflammation. You can take flaxseed oil through capsules or in a bottle. 

Fish Oil Supplements

Talk to your doctor about natural remedies you can use to ease your joint problems. For example, fish oil might help reduce your joint stiffness and pain. 

Talk to a doctor to avoid interactions with other medications. 

Visit a Specialist

Schedule an appointment with a doctor right away if you experience:

  • Rapid swelling
  • An inability to move a joint
  • Intense redness
  • Skin that’s hot to the touch
  • Severe pain
  • Joint deformity

They’ll determine the underlying cause of your symptoms before determining a course of treatment. 

Joint Pain and Stiffness: You Guide to Keeping the Pain at Bay

You don’t have to live life with joint pain and stiffness. If these symptoms sound familiar, consider giving physical therapy a try. PT can improve your strength and reduce your likelihood of injuries. 

With help, you can improve your mobility and quality of life. 

Interested in physical therapy to reduce your joint stiffness? We can help.

Contact our team today to learn more.