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9 Ways to Relieve Daily Hip Pain

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14th Mar 2024

When you suffer everyday hip discomfort caused by arthritis (the lack of protective padding in the joint) or bursitis (inflammation of the fluid-filled sacs that pad the joint), it can make walking, climbing stairs, and bending over difficult. But it does not have to be this way. Here are nine things you can take to help manage hip pain.

1. Start Your Day With Exercise

According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, exercises that strengthen and stretch the muscles that support your hips can help you feel better and have more range of motion. The Bridge is one of the exercises advised by the Arthritis Foundation. It stretches the front of your hip while also working your gluteus and hamstring muscles. Lie on your back, legs bent and feet flat on the floor, hip-width apart.

Press down through your ankles and raise your buttocks off the ground while tightening your abdominal muscles. Keep your knees aligned with your ankles and try for a straight line from knees to shoulders, taking care not to arch your back. Hold this position for three to five seconds before slowly lowering your buttocks back to the floor. Begin with one set of ten and gradually increase to two or three sets.

2. Stretch to Ease Stiffness

The AAOS recommends the following stretch for the sides of your hips: Stand with your left hand against a wall or a chair for stability. Cross your left leg behind the right. Lean your upper body to the right and push your hips to the left until you feel a strain on the outside of your hip. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds, then repeat four times. Do the same on the other side.

3. Strengthen Outer Thighs

Strengthening is critical to reducing hip pain. To strengthen the muscles in your outer thighs, lie on your pain-free side and raise the leg with arthritis about six inches, hold for five seconds, and then lower it again. Aim for 8-12 repetitions. Repeat on the opposite side, unless it is too painful. You can also perform the exercise standing. Adding a resistance band to your workout can increase the intensity.

4. Strengthen Inner Thighs

This is another muscle group that supports your hips. Lie on your side, with a folded towel under your hip for extra padding. Bend your upper knee and bring it forward to the floor to provide support. Raise your lower leg approximately six inches, hold for five seconds, and then lower it again. Begin with eight repetitions and work up to twelve. Repeat on the opposite side.

5. Work Out in Water

Choose cardiovascular exercises carefully to avoid putting additional stress and pressure on your joints. Swimming and water aerobics are excellent ways to exercise without damaging your hip joints.

6. Avoid High-Impact Activities

Running and jumping can exacerbate hip pain, so avoid them. The AAOS encourages transitioning to lower-impact activities such as walking or cycling.

7. Cool Inflammation With Ice

Icing your hip joint can reduce inflammation and relieve pain. Wrap an ice pack in a towel and place it where you're experiencing pain. Repeat this for 10 to 15 minutes at a time, up to four times per day. If you are experiencing pain or swelling after exercising, try it immediately.

8. Use Heat for Arthritis

Warming up an arthritic hip joint with a hot shower or bath can provide relief. According to the Arthritis Foundation, heat stimulates blood flow to the wounded area, which promotes recovery. It may help your workouts if you lie on a heating pad for a few minutes before beginning. Consult your doctor first if you have bursitis. Heat can worsen a recent injury.

9. Lose Weight for Arthritis Relief

If you have osteoarthritis in your hip, which is caused by wear and tear on the cartilage in your joint, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons advises decreasing even a few pounds will help ease joint strain and hip pain. It can also prevent bursitis from worsening.