The largest and arguably most important joint in the body is the hip joint. Therefore, keeping this region functioning well is important to the entire body’s movement mechanics. The hip joint is structured like a ball-and-socket where the head of the femur bone fits like a ball into the cup-shaped hipbone and held together by ligaments and lined with cartilage. This structure provides great range of motion, supports the weight of the upper body and absorbs any force to the area enabling us to walk, run and be active.
Likely due to the joint’s size and proximity, pain can arise for a variety of reasons. A traumatic injury such as a car crash or fall, arthritis from wear and tear or other bodily movement mechanic dysfunctions could trigger hip pain. Physical therapists work with patients to identify the source of the pain and work to reverse it.
A common treatment approach combines strengthening with increasing range of motion. Physical therapy focuses on strengthening the nearly 30 muscles in the hip area, increasing flexibility around the joint and ultimately decreasing the associated inflammation.
In the case of a traumatic injury such as a labral tear, physical therapy won’t help heal the tear. With the appropriate muscle training and activity modification, however, the symptoms may improve and help to avoid or prolong the need for surgery.
Aquatic therapy is also a great option for hip pain, whether to prevent surgery or to recover after surgery. The underwater treadmill relieves pressure on the joint allowing greater range of motion which can help correct any limp you may have.
If hip pain is keeping you from enjoying life, please give our offices a call to schedule a free physical examination with one of our physical therapists. We are happy to treat your hip pain conservatively, or if necessary, help you prepare for and recover from hip surgery. We have three offices in Pasco, Richland and Kennewick.
Call us at 509-416-0444 to schedule your FREE consultation with a physical therapist.