Most knee problems will start to improve within 8-24 weeks
Knee pain can be a symptom of many different conditions. Sometimes it is difficult to know what has caused the knee to be painful, as there may not have been an obvious reason. Often a knee can become painful a few days after doing an activity that is different for you. This may have been something simple, such as a longer time spent walking or more time kneeling whilst gardening or cleaning.
For some people their knee pain may be the result of injury sustained whilst playing sport or from a fall or awkward twist on the knee.
Most knee problems will start to improve within 8-24 weeks.
No matter the cause of your knee pain, there are some simple things you can try to help your knee recover:
- Rest – reduce or stop any activities that aggravate the knee. This may involve spending less time standing and walking to begin with.
- Ice – apply an ice pack if the knee is warm or swollen (or a bag of frozen vegetables wrapped in a tea towel) to the injury for up to 20 minutes every 2 to 3 hours.
- Compression – wrap a bandage around the injury to support it if it is swollen.
- Elevate – keep it raised on a pillow as much as possible if it is swollen. Use pain killers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen as they can help you to remain active, which helps you recover quicker. Remember to check they are safe for you. If you are not sure or struggling to manage your pain, then speak with a pharmacist. (Do not use ibuprofen in the first 48 hours after an injury as it may slow down healing).
- To help prevent swelling, try to avoid heat (such as hot baths and heat packs), alcohol and massages for the first couple of days.
- Try to gently bend and straighten the knee as soon as possible to avoid the knee
If you already have a diagnosis from a medical professional you may find some of the following links more helpful.
Contact NHS 111 now if:
- our knee is very painful
- you cannot move your knee or put any weight on it
- your knee is badly swollen or has changed shape
- your knee locks, gives way or painfully clicks – painless clicking is normal
- you have a very high temperature, feel hot and shivery, and have redness or heat around your knee – this can be a sign of infection
111 will tell you what to do. They can tell you the right place to get help if you need to see someone.
If your knee pain persists, or you are not sure what to do, you can self-refer to see a local physiotherapist who can help you with your problem.
If you are an NHS patient registered to a qualifying GP surgery, you can now refer yourself directly for MSK physiotherapy without needing an appointment at your GP practice.
You must be aged 16 or over and registered with a Wakefield GP.
Call 01924 224497 or complete the online form by clicking the link below.