Hip pain can be caused by several factors. There are instances when diseases that affect the hip joint cause pain in the said area. Depending on the cause, the pain may present itself while walking, running, or engaging in other physical activities.
Some of the most common symptoms include the following:
- Joint pain
- Groin pain
- Swelling over the hip
- Loss of motion in the hip
- Tenderness in the hip
- Difficulty sleeping on the hip
These symptoms vary in intensity from mild to severe, the latter being a cause of disability.
Common Causes of Hip Pain
Osteoarthritis – Among the elderly, osteoarthritis is by far the most common cause of pain in the hip. Also known as degenerative joint disease, it is a form of arthritis that is typically caused by the breakdown, inflammation, and subsequent loss of cartilage in the affected joints.
Although osteoarthritis has no definitive treatment, there are ways to slow down its progression and prevent the symptoms from worsening. There are other inflammatory disorders that can also trigger hip pain such as rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, and inflammatory bowel disease.
Hip Bursitis – A fluid-filled sac known as bursa surrounds your hip joints and practically all other major joints in the body. It cushions the joint and helps in reducing friction, but when it becomes inflamed, it leads to bursitis. The most common type of hip bursitis is called trochanteric bursit is, and it usually causes pain.
Overuse or Muscle strain – If you are athletic or physically active, this is a common issue. Subjecting your body to repetitive movements for prolonged periods can cause hip muscles to become bruised, sore or torn.
Wear and tear on the cartilage that surrounds the hip joint can also cause arthritis. In addition, daily activities that put stress on the hip may also trigger inflammation of the muscles and connective tissues surrounding the hip. This kind of pain can gradually develop over time.
Lower Back Problems – The primary reason why lower back pain usually radiates to the hips is the large group of nerves collectively known as the sciatic nerve. It is roughly as big as your thumb. It originates from the lower back, runs down the buttock, the posterior aspect of the thigh, all the way down to your feet.
When the sciatic nerve is pinched, damaged or the pain in the lower back is in close proximity to the nerve, the pain will present itself along the course of the nerve. This condition is called sciatica. Most sufferers perceive that the pain is coming from the hips, when in fact it is just a symptom of a number of problems that affect the lower back.
Referred Pain and Other Sources of Hip Pain
There are cases when the ‘hip pain’described by patients actually originates from other parts of the body. This is known as referred pain. Some patients who report pain in the lower back and hips may be dealing with dysfunction of the sacroiliac joints. Pain in the hip and groin can also be caused by a hernia, a condition when the abdominal wall is weekend or torn.
Chiropractic Treatment for Hip Pain
A number of painful conditions are caused by misalignment in the body, particularly in the spine. Chiropractors use different techniques to correctly realign the spine and relieve pain and restore normal mobility.
Trying chiropractic treatment for hip pain is generally a good idea because chiropractors have more than 100 types of adjustment techniques at their disposal. Most of them rely on a dozen or so to successfully treat their patients. Here are some of them:
High-Velocity, Low-Amplitude (HVLA) Thrust
This is one of the most commonly used techniques wherein chiropractors apply a sudden, controlled force to a joint. It is what patients are pertaining to when they say they had their back ‘cracked.’ There are 3 main types of HVLA thrust:
- Diversified technique – This is when a chiropractor performs a series of rapid adjustments to individual joints. It is estimated that 96 percent of chiropractors use this for 70 percent of their patients.
- Gonstead technique – This adjustment makes use of specialized chairs and tables to quickly adjust each joint. Chiropractors who practice this use visualization, motion palpation or static palpation to pinpoint where a patient is misaligned, and the best way to correct the misalignment.
- Thompson Terminal Point Technique (a.k.a. Thompson Drop-Table Technique) – This makes use of a precision adjusting table with a weighing instrument. The table takes advantage of the natural anatomy of the spinal joints to move a misaligned section in a manner that will improve the motion of that section in relation to those located above and below it.
Low-Force, Gentle Chiropractic Care
This works best for patients who can’t tolerate sudden movements or who are dealing with conditions that rule out the use of HVLA thrust. With this technique, the chiropractor continuously applies low force to achieve the desired effect.
The most common types of low-force, gentle chiropractic care are spinal mobilization techniques. They include the following:
- Activator method – The chiropractor uses a hand-held, spring-loaded, manual device that delivers a low-force impulse. The patient lies prone (face down), and the chiropractor takes measurements, performs muscle testing, and adjusts the spine using the Activator device.
- Core flexion-distraction – The chiropractor applies a gentle stretch to the lower spine in order to adjust the vertebrae. This technique is usually performed using a series of repetitive movements similar to a slow rocking motion.
- Toggle drop – Just like the Drop Technique, this one also uses a specially-designed drop table. The chiropractor puts his/her hands on the target area and applies steady pressure then releases a portion of the table.
- Mackenzie technique – This makes the patient select the most comfortable position for spinal adjustment. This is the best approach for patients who are anxious about undergoing chiropractic treatment.
- Sacro-Occipital Technique – The chiropractor places wedge-shaped blocks under the pelvis and uses the patient’s weight and breathing to improve the position of the hip bones.
Risk of Chiropractic Adjustment for Hip
Chiropractic treatment is gaining a lot of support for different conditions, thanks to the growing body of research that proves its effectiveness.
Chiropractic adjustment for the hip has been shown in multiple studies to be more effective in relieving pain than prescription medication. It is practically risk-free as long as you seek the care of licensed practitioners.
The PhysioCore Commitment
We are proud to have a chiropractor who can customize a treatment plan for you. Rest assured that we will exert all means possible to help you recover and teach you how to deal with your condition even when you are not in our clinic. Moreover, we will educate you on how to prevent reoccurrence of your injury so we can achieve maximum restoration of overall function and mobility.
If you have any questions about chiropractic treatment for hip pain or wish to know if it’s right for you, please contact us at 905-882-1908.