If you have a joint that is causing you pain or discomfort, taking an over-the-counter pain reliever and hoping the issue goes away can be tempting. However, if the symptoms go on for over a week, you may need to visit an orthopedist. While many orthopedists specialize in orthopedic surgery, these highly skilled medical professionals will choose the least invasive treatment.
Consult a local orthopedist if you're experiencing any of the following symptoms:
Ongoing Joint Pain
It's common to feel pain in a joint after twisting it or banging it on something. If you're experiencing ongoing pain after an injury or ongoing joint pain without an injury, it's time to make an appointment to evaluate the situation. An orthopedist can run the necessary scans to evaluate the pain that you're experiencing and diagnose the issue.
Numbness or Tingling
If you're experiencing tingling or numbness in a joint, a limb, or in your extremities connected to a joint, it's time to visit an orthopedist. This doctor will help you determine how your joint's movement may be affecting your nerves' conduction and can then help devise a treatment plan.
If you have a joint that is not moving completely as it should, it's time to make an appointment with an orthopedist. For example, if you cannot bend or twist fully due to stiffness in your back or if you cannot entirely turn your head due to pain or stiffness in your neck, you should see an orthopedist. The specialist will evaluate your restricted movement and diagnose and treat your condition. You may be able to treat the issue with physical therapy and medication, for example, before more invasive remedies are necessary.
Grinding, Popping, or Snapping
If you have a joint that continually pops, cracks, snaps, or makes a grinding noise when you take it through its full range of motion, you may want to make an appointment with an orthopedist. This symptom is especially common in the shoulders, knees, and ankles. An orthopedist can evaluate the symptoms you're experiencing and help determine why your joint is grinding or popping and then decide on the best options for treatment. In some cases, this may be as simple as an injection, while in other cases surgical options may be necessary.
If you're dealing with any of the above symptoms, contact a local orthopedic clinic. The orthopedist will work with you to diagnose the issues that you're experiencing and treat your symptoms so that you're more comfortable and your joints work correctly.