City life is a fast life, everybody is running around to reach somewhere. They are all running a rat race. Phrases like these are commonplace, and whether we like it or not they are partially if not completely true. We all are running our life’s marathon and at times suffer from runner’s knee. The metaphoric one isn’t much different from the real one. So in the interest of mankind, I am sharing my knowledge of physical ailment runner’s knee and the treatment method can be applied to the metaphoric one as well.
Runner’s knee is a common name for various types of conditions that cause pain in or around the patella (kneecap). Among these the most common is Patellofemoral pain, Chondromalacia patella, Iliotibial band syndrome. Basically, these all mean that one way or another you are feeling pain either at the back of the knee (femur) or in the patella. This can happen due to strained or torn cartilage, problems with tendons, misalignment in your knee where it is not rotating or moving in the right way, weak thigh muscles and others.
As the name suggests it is more common in runners and women more than men are more susceptible to it. The main symptom of this condition is you feel pain while running, walking, climbing uphill or downhill, sitting, kneeling, biking, skiing, etc. There may be swelling or popping of the knee as well.
This condition can be caused by overuse of the knee, being overweight puts undue pressure on the knee as well, any injury to the area, flat feet, inflammation of the joints, arthritis, insufficient stretching, dislocation of the joint, weak quadriceps, can all lead to runner’s knee.
Now the essential part, the treatment, when runner’s knee gets in the way, you take a break, you apply RICE:
· REST: Rest means go easy on your knee, replace your knee stressing exercises with maybe swimming so there is not so much pressure on the knee.
· ICE THERAPY: Applying ice on the strained area is the next step. The cold compression will soothe down the inflammation reduce the swelling, ease the nerves. You can apply it for 30 minutes for 2 3 days.
· COMPRESSION: Our knees support us through our journey through life, but sometimes they need support as well. So wrap them in a bandage, you may use straps too.
· ELEVATE: When sitting or lying down use a pillow to elevate your leg.
· If need be you can take NSAID (Non-Steroidal Anti Inflammatory Drugs) and check with a physiotherapist.
This given sometime should put you back in the race. Ensure to take sufficient timeout else you may end up damaging your knee and find it buckling under pressure. In extreme cases, you would need to consult an orthopedic and may have to undergo surgery.
As preventive measures go, invest in a good shoe, make sure you stretch properly, ease into heavy-duty workouts, maintain a healthy weight, try and avoid hard surfaces for running.
In life also, a timeout isn’t a bad thing, sometimes a break and recuperating and getting back in the race is the way to go as life is a marathon and not a 100 meter.