It’s tricky to estimate the true number of people that suffer from SI joint pain.
Your sacroiliac joint is what connects your hip bones to the sacrum, which is the triangular bone between your tailbone and lumbar spine. Studies indicated that as much as 15% of all lower back pain has its source in the SI joint.
This type of joint pain is common in those that suffer from arthritis, but it can also result from injury. You may start noticing this pain in your lower back or buttock, but it can quickly radiate outwards, first to your lower hips and upper thighs. The pain can be sharp or tingling, but debilitating either way.
If you’re suffering from SI joint pain, you may be wondering what type of joint pain relief is out there as an option. In this post, we’re going to go over the various treatment options, as well as pain medication for the SI joint.
Arthritis and back pain can make normal daily activities untenable. Keep reading and learn how to treat your SI joint pain ASAP.
To diagnose SI joint pain, you’ll first need to start recognizing the symptoms that we mentioned above. Symptoms appear differently and at different levels of severity for different people. You may experience constant sharp pain in your lower back or it could be a dull ache that gets worse over time.
These symptoms are tricky to diagnose because they share similarities with a number of other root causes of back pain. If these pains last for longer than a few days, it’s important to see your GP to get a proper diagnosis. If you don’t, it could lead to chronic pain or a misdiagnosis that could lead to surgery that you don’t need.
When you see your doctor, they’ll try to figure out where the pain is located by moving your legs, knees, and hips. Once that’s complete, they’ll likely send you for diagnostic imaging.
This will involve X-rays of the lower back, hips, and pelvis to determine if you have a fracture. An X-ray will indicate any damage to the SI joint, but they may also give you a CT scan or an MRI to look at your spine and soft tissue.
With a proper diagnosis from your doctor, you can move on to treatment. There are a variety of treatment options, but to start out treating an early case of SI joint pain, you’ll want to integrate rest and attempt to reduce the inflammation.
Your rest period should last between 1-2 days to keep you off of your feet, which could disrupt the joint. Anything longer than 2 days may actually be detrimental because the joint could stiffen and become even more uncomfortable/painful.
While you’re resting, your doctor will probably recommend that you apply ice and heat. Ice will reduce inflammation, while heat will ease tension and spasms.
Home treatments can help alleviate the symptoms of SI joint pain, but when the scans find actual issues, physical therapy will be important. Doing this will help to strengthen the muscles and make them more stable in supporting the SI joint.
Specific stretches will help to relieve tension in the soft tissues around the SI joint. Hamstring, quadriceps, and hip-adductor stretches will allow you to work on these areas from the comfort of your home.
There are also a variety of strengthening exercises you can do to build up certain muscle groups to support the SI joint. These include working out the abdomen, lower back muscles, and trunk muscles.
Some aerobic exercise can help to increase bloodflow to the damaged joint, allowing it to heal more efficiently. Things like running on an elliptical machine, doing water aerobics, or using a stationary bike are low-impact exercises that can really help.
If the SI joint pain worsens and there’s a serious risk of long-term damage to the joint, there are other procedures that might be in order.
One of the things your doctor may suggest is shots to the joint. Corticosteroids can help immediately reduce pain and swelling, but can only be taken a few times per year, as the shots can weaken other bones and tendons. That said, they can be helpful in reducing pain when you start physical therapy.
Another procedure common to SI joint pain is radiofrequency denervation. This utilizes radiofrequency energy to damage/destroy the nerve which is causing you pain.
Lastly, joint fusion – although rarely used for the SI joint – can be a permanent solution. With this, you’ll have your bones fused together with metal hardware. It’s a drastic option that your doctor isn’t likely to suggest for SI joint pain, but it can potentially relieve the pain.
There are a variety of pain medications that your doctor can prescribe to alleviate different types of joint pain. You can even take the initiative and try out OTC pain relievers, such as ibuprofen or naproxen. If these don’t work, talk to your doctor about a safe option that’s a bit stronger.
Muscle relaxers are another way to go. Cyclobenzaprine is a popular option to reduce the muscle spasms that are common to SI joint pain. There are also a number of biologics that are used to treat SI joint issues.
At Kiwi Drug, we offer a variety of pain-reducing medications and supplements. If you’re experiencing SI joint pain, we’ve got regular pain relief drugs in capsule form. We also offer anti-inflammation joint creams, as well as CBD-based oils and patches that may help to reduce pain.
Whehter you’ve got a diagnosis for your SI joint pain or not, it’s never too early to start treating your symptoms. Don’t wait to start implementing some of the therapeutic exercises and treatment methods so that you can curtail the pain before it becomes a major issue.
As soon as you start feeling the pain, it’s a good idea to start using medication. Pain relievers and anti-inflammation ointments are incredibly helpful in tandem with physical therapy and, at Kiwi Drug, we give you access to everything you could ever want.
To peruse our selection of pain relief options, head over to our shop and get what you need to stop SI joint pain in its tracks.