Joint pain is a very common problem with many possible causes but it's usually a result of injury or arthritis.
The information and advice on this page shouldn't be used to self-diagnose your problem, but may give you a better idea of what's causing your pain.
Pain in just one joint
The knee joint is probably the most frequently damaged joint and is particularly vulnerable as it takes the full weight of your body.
However, knee pain isn't always a joint problem. Learn about the most common causes of knee pain and what you should do.
Inflammation of the joint lining
If you've injured the joint recently and it suddenly becomes painful again, the thin layer of tissue lining the joints and tendons may be inflamed – a condition called traumatic synovitis. It usually doesn't cause any redness or heat.
You should be able to manage injury-related swelling at home with anti-inflammatories, an icepack and rest.
Tendonitis (such as tennis elbow) is when a tendon swells up and becomes painful after a tendon injury. You can treat mild tendon injuries yourself and should feel better within 2 to 3 weeks.
How to treat tendonitis yourself
Follow the 4 steps known as RICE therapy for 2 to 3 days to help bring down swelling and support the injury:
When you can move the injured area without pain stopping you, try to keep moving it so the tendon doesn't become stiff.
Check if it's tendonitis
There are tendons all over your body. They connect your muscles to bones, for example in your knees, elbows and shoulders.
The main symptoms of tendonitis are:
There are many different types of tendonitis, depending on which area of the body is affected.
Go to a minor Injuries Unit if:
A ruptured tendon usually causes sudden and severe pain. You might hear a popping or snapping sound during the injury.
Treatment from a GP
Your doctor may prescribe a stronger painkiller or cream or gel to bring down the swelling.
You may be referred to hospital for a scan if your doctor thinks you could have another injury, such as a broken bone.
Some people with long-term or severe tendonitis may be offered:
If your condition does not improve it is advisable to see a physiotherapy.
You can't always prevent tendonitis
Tendonitis is most often caused by sudden, sharp movements or repetitive exercise, such as running, jumping or throwing.
To help reduce your risk of tendon injuries:
Tendonitis can also be caused by repetitive movements or having poor posture at work. For example, when using a keyboard and mouse. This is known as repetitive strain injury (RSI).
We had physiotherapists who can treat your tendon and joint problems here at The Chorley Clinic