You Asked: Why Does My Knee Hurt When I'm Sitting? A Few Possible Causes, And How To Relieve The Pain
Does your knee hurt when you're sitting? To relieve the pain, it's important to know what's causing it. Knee pain may be caused by many things, including sports injuries and various types of arthritis. Ways to relieve your pain depend on the cause, and they range from simple exercises you can do at home and cool compresses to steroid injections and surgery.
Below, we list several possible reasons why your knee is in pain when you are sitting and a few ways to relieve the pain at home.
Possible reasons why your knee hurts when you're sitting
The most common cause of knee pain is a minor injury sustained during exercise or other activities. If the injury is not serious, the pain soon starts to subside.
Other possible causes of knee pain when sitting include the following:
- tears in the connective tissue (cartilage, tendons, ligaments, or bursae) in the knee;
- fracture of the kneecap or other bones in the knee area;
- patellar tendonitis (inflammation of the tendons attached to the kneecap) - common in runners, skiers, and cyclists;
- osteoarthritis, caused by wear and tear of the joints associated with aging;
- rheumatoid arthritis, in which the body's own immune system attacks the joints and causes inflammation and pain;
- gout (gouty arthritis), in which urate crystals form in the joints and cause pain;
- an infection of the knee joint (septic arthritis);
- osteomyelitis, inflammation of the bones, usually caused by an infection.
More often than not, knee pain is a result of something you've been doing which put excess strain on the knee.
When to see a doctor
Often, knee pain starts to subside on its own. But you should see your doctor if you have knee pain (when sitting or doing something else) and when:
- it's severe and getting worse;
- it prevents you from doing your regular activities;
- home remedies (such as creams and ointments for joint pain, or cold and hot compresses) don't bring relief;
- the pain is accompanied by other symptoms, such as swelling, redness, and warmth.
Seek emergency help if you have the following symptoms:
- fast heart rate;
- shortness of breath;
- confusion and dizziness.
What you can do about your knee pain
If the knee pain when you're sitting persists, schedule an appointment with your doctor, and he or she will establish the underlying cause and decide which treatments will work best in your case.
If the pain is bothersome, but not debilitating, the following home remedies may help:
- propping up your knee with a couple of pillows when lying down;
- applying over-the-counter anti-inflammatory creams and ointments;
- placing an ice pack or a heating pad on the knee;
- taking frequent breaks from sitting;
- sitting with your legs outstretched, not bent at a 90-degree angle;
- flexing your knees every 30 minutes or so.
Note: If movement makes the pain worse (commonly seen in knee pain resulting from injuries), your doctor may recommend minimizing knee movement temporarily.
This article is solely for informational purposes. Do not self-diagnose or self-medicate, and in all cases consult a certified healthcare professional before using any information presented in the article. The editorial board does not guarantee any results and does not bear any responsibility for any harm that may result from using the information provided in the article.