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Managing Hip Pain

    Hip pain is a common complaint that can be caused by variety of factors. The hip joint is a ball and socket joint that allows for a wide range of motion, including walking, running, and turning. As a physiotherapist, we routinely see patients who are experiencing hip pain due to overuse, injury, surgery or underlying medical conditions. In this blog post, let’s discuss the hip joint, symptoms, causes, and treatments options, as well as some exercises.

    The Hip Joint

    Hip joint comprises the ball-shaped head of the femur (thigh bone) and the acetabulum, a socket in the pelvic bone. The head of the femur fits snugly into the acetabulum, allowing for smooth movement of the hip joint. A capsule, which is filled with synovial fluid to lubricate and nourish the joint surrounds the joint. Strong muscles and ligaments support the hip joint and help to keep it stable.

    Symptoms And Causes

    Hip pain can range from a dull ache to a sharp, stabbing sensation. Some common symptoms include:

    • Pain in the groin, thigh, or buttock
    • Pain when walking, running, or climbing stairs
    • Stiffness in the hip joint
    • Difficulty standing up from a seated position
    • Swelling or tenderness around the hip joint

    There are many probable causes. Some common causes include:

    • Osteoarthritis: Osteoarthritis is a common cause of hip pain, particularly in older adults. It is a degenerative condition that causes the cartilage in the joint to wear away, leading to pain, stiffness, and limited range of motion.
    • Bursitis: Bursitis is an inflammation of the bursae, small fluid-filled sacs that cushion and lubricate the hip joint. Overuse or injury can cause bursitis.
    • Fractures: Falls, sports injuries, or other types of trauma can cause fractures, or a break in the bones.
    • Tendinitis: Tendinitis is an inflammation of the tendons, which are the strong, fibrous cords that attach muscle to bone. Overuse or injury can cause tendinitis of the hip.

    Treatments for Hip Pain

    The treatment for hip pain will depend on the cause and severity. Some common treatments include:

    • Rest: Resting the hip and avoiding activities that worsen the pain can help to reduce inflammation and promote healing.
    • Ice: Applying ice to the hip can help to reduce swelling and numb the pain.
    • Pain medication: Over-the-counter pain medication, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, can help to reduce pain and inflammation.
    • Physical therapy: Physical therapy can help to strengthen the muscles around the hip and improve range of motion.
    • Surgery: In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to repair or stabilize the hip joint.

    Exercises for Hip Pain

    If you are experiencing hip pain, it’s important to consult with a physiotherapist or healthcare provider before starting any exercise program. That being said, some exercises that may help to ease the pain include:

    • Leg raises: Lie on your back with your legs straight. Slowly lift one leg off the ground, keeping it straight, and then lower it back down.
    • Hip abduction: Stand close to a wall for support. Slowly lift your leg sideways off the ground, keeping it straight, and then return it back to starting position.
    • Clamshells: Lie on your side with your knees bent and feet together. Keeping your feet together, lift your top knee off the ground, and then lower it back down.
    • Bridging: Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground. Lift your hips off the ground, squeezing your buttocks, and then lower them back down.

    When to See a Physio

    If you are experiencing pain that persists despite self-care measures such as rest and ice, or if your pain is severe or debilitating, it may be time to seek the guidance of a physiotherapist. A physiotherapist can assess your condition and develop a treatment plan that is tailored to your specific needs and goals.

    Online physiotherapy is a convenient and effective option for receiving care for hip pain. Many physiotherapists offer virtual consultations and treatments via video call, allowing you to receive treatment from the comfort of your own home. This can be especially helpful for those who have mobility issues or cannot visit a physiotherapy clinic in person because of other restrictions.

    At KBPhysio, you will be able to consult with registered practitioners with over a decade of experience and offering virtual physiotherapy. We focus on not just on exercise to reduce your pain but also focus on education as well as improving body movement patterns, so that you can continue to take part in life and recreational activities that give you the most joy. We offer free consultations over phone and use zoom as a video platform to talk through any questions you may have. Get in touch with us (778) 658-6949 or email us.

    Further Reading