Skip to main content

When to See a Doctor about Joint Pain

Aches and pains in your joints can be a reality of aging — but if you have joint pain that just won’t let up, how do you know when it’s time to seek medical attention? The expert professionals at South Texas Spinal Clinic have the experience you can trust when it comes to diagnosing the cause of your joint pain problems and recommending the best treatment plan for you.

Our care team treats new and existing patients with joint pain complaints throughout the San Antonio and South Texas area. Here’s what we want our patients to know about when it’s time to get help with chronic or acute joint pain.

Potential causes of your joint pain

Every day, you rely on each of the 360 joints in your body to keep you moving and support your body. With all that wear and tear, joints can eventually break down, leaving you dealing with pain from grinding bones and pinched nerves.

You could experience pain in joints located in your back and neck, arms, wrists, hands, legs, knees, ankles, or feet. Joints that carry a lot of weight, like your hips and knees, are classic culprits for damage due to wear and tear over time, especially for older patients. Your chronic joint pain may also be due to an underlying condition like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, or an autoimmune disease like lupus.

When to seek treatment

Often, joint pain can be handled at home with a few days of self-care. You can try strategies like using over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen or naproxen sodium to reduce pain and inflammation. Try icing your affected joint for 15 to 20 minutes a few times each day, or use a heating pad or hot bath to help painfully tensed muscles start to relax.

If you find yourself dealing with regular joint pain accompanied by swelling, redness, tenderness, or warmth around the affected joint, however, you should see a doctor to get it checked out for underlying medical conditions. 

Your joint pain may be treatable, and, if you have certain types of arthritis, early detection and treatment can make a big difference in your long-term outcomes.

You should seek medical attention right away if you have intense joint pain relating to an accident, in addition to joint deformity, sudden swelling, and an inability to move the affected joint.

Treatment options

After your thorough exam and diagnosis, we work with you to develop your customized treatment plan.

You may benefit from pain management options, including physical therapy, muscle and joint injections, spine injections, and massage. Regenerative medicine can also be helpful for patients with chronic joint pain. In severe cases of joint damage, you may need joint replacement surgery to fully restore your mobility and end your pain symptoms.

To schedule your initial consultation with a member of the South Texas Spinal Clinic team and discuss your joint pain concerns, call today, or use the online tool to request your appointment now.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Can Physical Therapy Resolve My Recurrent Sciatica for Good?

Can Physical Therapy Resolve My Recurrent Sciatica for Good?

Sciatica pain in your lower back, buttocks, and legs seems like it may never end, especially if you suffer from recurrent sciatica. Could physical therapy help you find lasting pain relief? Here’s more about physical therapy treatment for sciatica.
Spotting the Warning Signs of a Herniated Disc

Spotting the Warning Signs of a Herniated Disc

A herniated spinal disc can be a pain in your neck — or in your back! Read to learn more about common early warning signs of a herniated disc and what you can do to address and improve your condition.