1. Household Chores Can Be Exhausting
When you suffer from knee or hip pain, doing even the most basic household chores can be completely exhausting. A to-do list that would take you only a few hours earlier in life may now take you several days or even longer. You start your day with the best of intentions and immediately start working on your list of things to get done. However, by the time lunch rolls around you are completely exhausted and can barely stand to take another step. No matter how badly you may want to get everything done, it's simply not always an option.
2. Even Sleep Can Be a Challenge
When your joints are in pain it makes sleep exceptionally difficult. Trying to find the perfect position to fall asleep in can become a real problem as your knees and hips start to hurt after lying in any position for too long and then when you try to move it creates even more pain. This makes getting your household chores done even more difficult because you're starting the day exhausted after not sleeping well the night before. Many who suffer from chronic hip and knee pain develop complex bedtime rituals to get their body ready for lying down for the evening. These rituals may include breathing exercises, medications, ensuring the bedroom is at an optimal temperature, and positioning pillows just right so you can sleep comfortably through the night.
3. Getting Out of the Bed in the Morning can be the Hardest Part of the Day
Even if you're mentally ready to get the day started, getting your body to cooperate can be a huge task when you suffer from joint pain. When you wake in the morning, your joints are stiff and the pain can be unbearable. If you don't have anybody to help you get out of bed in the morning it can be difficult to even get the day started. Getting out of bed becomes an everyday struggle which can lead to severe mental anguish.
4. Depression Seems Unavoidable when you Struggle to get through the Day
It takes a lot of mental fortitude to not only push through today but to prepare yourself for the day ahead. When the first thing you are greeted with each day are stiff joints and extreme pain it can be tough to keep a positive outlook. According to a study conducted by the National Institute of Health (NIH), people who suffer from chronic pain are not only more likely to be depressed, but they're more likely to commit suicide as well. When pain levels are constant for extended periods of time, it can be extremely difficult to stay in high spirits and it may be hard to imagine that the pay will ever subside.
5. Your Friends and Loved Ones may not Understand
Joint pain may not be as visible and obvious as some other things that can affect your health so if somebody has never experienced chronic joint pain then they may think you can just "tough it out" or push through the pain. Of course, the reality is that hip and knee pain isn't something you can simply push through. It's something that affects every area of your life, making even the most mundane of daily activities a struggle. The lack of empathy from others can make it difficult to explain why you may not be able to go to a theme park with the grandkids or catch a baseball, as much as you may want to.
6. Your Pharmacist Greets you by Name
Trips to the local pharmacy may be a weekly routine to get pain medication just so you can get through your week. As a result, you may get to know your local pharmacist better than you'd ever hoped to. Physical therapy may help you cope with the pain, improve your range of motion, and ease pain and inflammation.
7. Sometimes Google May Seem to Understand You Better than Anybody Else
When every day is a struggle, you tend to spend a lot of time searching for answers about how to better cope with the pain and understand what treatment options exist. Searching Google and sites like WebMD become a nearly daily activity in your search for relief. Fortunately, the Joint Center staff at Augusta Health is fully equipped to help get you on the road to recovery.
8. You Look Forward to Your Next Shot
Cortisone shots can be a lifesaver when your knee and hip pain is at its worst, so much so that you may even look forward to your next shot. However, their pain relief never seems to last long enough and for some, it may not be effective at all. When the Cortisone shots begin to be less effective, it may be time to consider joint replacement surgery.
9. As Ready as you are to Live Life Pain-Free, Surgery May Seem a Bit Scary
Even though you think daily about how your new, pain-free life will make things better, when you think about the surgery and recovery it can be scary. You're unsure about the pain you'll be in after surgery and you've read or even heard stories from people about the things that can go wrong with joint surgery. Rest assured though – joint surgery is a very common procedure in today's society with very limited risk.
10. Even after you've had Surgery and the Pain is Gone, Thinking about Movements that Used to Cause you Pain Still Causes Anxiety
After suffering with chronic joint pain for an extended period of time, the anxiety caused by the anticipation of certain movements will not immediately fade away. The good news is that after you've head surgery and you're back to full health, the pain will be nothing more than a distant memory.
If you're ready to learn more about how the Joint Center at Augusta Health can help you on the road to recovery, give us a call today at (540) 332-5047.