Top 9 Treatments for Chronic Joint Pain

Jun 2, 2021

Joint pain can occur for a wide variety of reasons, from various forms of arthritis to injuries to gout, and in a variety of ways. Some injuries may cause temporary joint pain, while others have it chronically and may spend years seeking relief from the pain. A Lithia Springs orthopedics clinic will be able to provide treatment that addresses the root cause of your pain, and depending on what they determine, they may suggest a wide range of options. Below are some of the best treatments for those with chronic joint pain.

Self-Care at Home

Some classic treatments are classic because they work. In the comfort of your own home, you can use ice and heat therapy to address joint pain, reduce inflammation, and loosen tight muscles that may be worsening your symptoms. If possible, you can also elevate the joint above the level of your heart to prevent swelling and encourage rest.

Low-Impact Exercise

While rest is good, it can be overdone in the case of joint pain. Moving gently can help maintain range of motion and build muscle strength. Additionally, excess weight can be a cause of joint pain as it places extra pressure on the joints. Movement is recommended if you choose low-impact options that don’t further strain your joints, and you can gradually increase impact over time. Swimming and biking are both recommended exercises for joint pain.

Physical Therapy

To improve range of motion and reduce the chances of further injury, a physical therapist can develop special exercise plans to strengthen the muscles surrounding your affected joints. A Lithia Springs orthopedics specialist will often work with physical therapists to address pain in a safe manner through both in-office exercises and routines you will be asked to continue at home.

Topical Agents

Some over-the-counter options contain menthol or methyl salicylate, like Bengay or Icy Hot, can be used to reduce joint pain. But less common is topical capsaicin, which contains the active substance found in chili peppers that causes a burning sensation. When rubbed into the skin, this triggers the release of endorphins that block pain signals throughout the nerves.


A Lithia Springs orthopedics specialist will always want to focus on addressing the root cause of your joint pain rather than simply masking the symptoms.
However, pain relief can be important, so they may recommend either prescription or over-the-counter medication to help manage symptoms. Some options will also contain an anti-inflammatory property that can reduce swelling and promote faster healing. Medications should always be used in moderation and under the supervision of a doctor, especially if your pain is severe enough to warrant a prescription for opioids.


Certain joints, like the knee, can be helped by external support like a brace. The support provided can improve the alignment of the joint to relieve pain. In some cases, these can be bought over the counter, but doctors may also recommend a specific brace or one that is custom fit to your joint, especially if it is particularly out of alignment. Braces should not be used 24/7 but you will be given guidelines on how often to use them.


If minimally invasive treatments are not cutting it, your doctor may recommend steroid injections. Cortisone can be used to help reduce inflammation around joints, allowing for less pain and better movement. There are potential side effects with these injections, especially if they’re used long-term, so you will want to discuss risks and benefits with a Lithia Springs orthopedics clinic.


If common treatments are not helping to relieve severe pain, your doctor will want to gather more information by looking inside your joint, with a procedure called an arthroscopy. This is a minimally invasive surgery in which a small tube containing a camera is inserted under the skin, providing a magnified view of the joint. This allows for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan to be created.

Joint Replacement

When your quality of life is severely impacted and other treatments have not been effective, your doctor may recommend a complete joint replacement surgery. The damaged joint can be replaced with an artificial version made out of plastic, metal, or a combination of the materials. These artificial joints can last a decade or longer before they need to be replaced.

If you are suffering from chronic joint pain, AICA Lithia Springs can help. Contact us today to meet with our talented team of Lithia Springs orthopedics experts and develop the plan that is right for you.


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