Meniscus tears are one of the most common knee injuries observed. Athletes, especially those who play different varieties of contact sports, such as football, are at high risk of experiencing meniscus tears. Athletes in noncontact sports that require jumping and cutting, such as soccer and volleyball, are also at high risk.Meniscus tears are not dependent on age (although they are significantly more seen in athletes above the age of forty) or gender assigned at birth, or gender transformation.They can, however, occur when a person abruptly changes direction while running and are often accompanied by other injuries, such as ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) injury. When people refer to a "torn knee cartilage," they usually discuss How to heal a torn meniscus naturally.
What is a meniscus?The knee joint is formed when two bones: the tibia and the femur, meet. The knee cap (patella) sits before this joint to provide a protective shield.Two wedge-shaped pieces of fibrocartilage act as shock absorbers between the femur and the tibia. These two pieces of cartilage are known as menisci (singular: meniscus). The menisci help to transmit weight from one bone to another (from the tibia to the femur and vice versa). This function plays a significant role in knee stability.
When does a meniscus tear happen?Acute meniscus tear most often happens during sports. They can occur through either a contact injury or a noncontact injury. Sports such as football, soccer, and volleyball may involve abrupt movements and cause a meniscus tear.Age, too, plays a factor in this case. As people age, they become more likely to have degenerative meniscus tears. Their meniscus becomes weak as age comes with several hormonal and enzymatic changes. Something as simple as an awkward twist while attempting to get up from a chair may cause a tear in an aging meniscus.
What does a meniscus tear feel like?You might feel or even slightly hear a "pop" when you tear a meniscus. In most cases, people can walk on their injured knees, and athletes can continue sports on the same. Over two to three days, however, the injury area will become more stiff and swollen. If you have torn your meniscus, it may take about a full day (around twenty-four hours) for the pain to begin. Alongside, you may also experience the following symptoms:
- Pain, especially when bending, twisting, or rotating your knee
- Stiffness and swelling of the knee
- Catching or locking of the injured knee
- The sensation that your knee is giving away
- Inability to move your knee through its complete range of motion.
Tips to Heal a Torn Meniscus Naturally -Following are the few home-based treatment that help to alleviate theTorn Meniscus pain:
1. Active Rest:The first thing recommended and advised is to cease abrupt and cutting movements such as soccer but simultaneously still engage in light movements like walks, swimming, or any exercise which is not weight-bearing and would not put stress on the knee but rather relax it.
2. Range of Motion:Try and maintain a good range of motion for your affected or injured knee, or improve your existing range. Focusing on exercises where you can sit or lie down and gently bend and straighten the knee as far as is comfortable is recommended. This prevents stiffness and improves blood circulation, which in turn aids in healing.
3. Strength Training:Maintaining or building strength in muscles surrounding the knee, like your quadriceps, hamstrings, and hip muscles, is important. These all work synergistically to stabilize the knee and prevent a meniscal tear in the foreseeable future. Exercises may include stair climbing, leg presses, and lunges. Remember that you should only go ahead with an exercise if no pain is experienced.
4. Balance Training:Often after a meniscal injury, your balance is compromised. This may lead to further instabilities and injuries in the knee. A simple way to work on this is with balance exercises such as standing on one Leg and calf raises on one Leg.
5. Nutrition Support:Keeping yourself hydrated while maintaining a high-nutrient diet is necessary. Your diet must include nutrient-dense and anti-inflammatory foods that help the body heal your torn meniscus and keep your joints lubricated. Often, food is not enough, and you may need to incorporate nutritional supplements like turmeric extract, which is a safe and effective way to reduce inflammation while you heal.Also Read: Dehydration - Causes and Prevention
Effective exercises for quick meniscus recovery -Once you have had your rest and passive healing, it is recommended that you try meniscus tear exercises for healing better. Some such exercises have been listed below.
- Flexion/Extension: This exercise can be done standing or sitting. You must bend and straighten your knee as far as possible without experiencing too much pain. Minimal pain is expected and normal. It is advised that this exercise be done in three sets of 10 to 20 repetitions.
- Straight Leg Raises: This exercise requires lying down on your back. Keep your uninjured, healthy knee bent and your foot flat. Your injured knee should remain straight on the ground. Then, slowly lift the injured Leg off the floor to about six inches, and hold it straight, contracting your muscles for at least a count of three. Then lower your Leg gradually. It is recommended you repeat this ten times on each Leg.
- Heel Slides: This exercise requires you to lay on your back again. You need to lay on your back while keeping any one knee bent. Slide the heel of the Leg with the bent knee as far as possible towards your buttocks. It is advised to repeat this 10 to 20 times on each Leg.
- Calf Raises: You would need to stand with your feet shoulder-width apart for this particular exercise. You can use a wall or a chair for support if you think that is necessary. Lift your heels as high as possible off the ground and then gradually lower them to the floor. Repeating this in 2 or 3 sets of 20 repetitions is recommended.
- Hip Abduction: In this exercise, you must only balance yourself on the uninjured Leg. You can use a wall, a chair, or something sturdy for your support. Then, you need to move the injured Leg out to the side, as far away from your body as possible. You should repeat this routine 20 times.
Anti-Inflammatory Diet for Promoting Healing from a Torn Meniscus -Alongside rest and regular exercise, diet plays an important role in the body healing any of its injuries. As they rightly say, "You are what you eat." With a torn meniscus, inflammation becomes one of the major issues. There are natural ways to reduce swelling through a healthy diet and including certain supplements.The anti-inflammatory foods that you might want to include in your diet are as follows:
- Fruits and vegetables, especially berries and green leafy vegetables
- Quality proteins, such as fish, eggs, meat, et cetera
- Nuts and seeds
- Healthy fats like Olive oil, Coconut oil, and avocado
- Healthy liquids like bone broth and green tea
- Plenty of water
When to seek Chiropractic Treatment for a Torn Meniscus?It is common for patients to overlook the benefits of chiropractic care as a treatment for their torn meniscus. Several natural soft tissue therapies are available to improve flexibility and reduce pain as the body heals. Visiting a chiropractor to assess your injury and figure out which treatments to take up for you to heal better may be useful. It will help you determine which pain management option best suits your torn meniscus.
Conclusion -Solution on how to heal a torn meniscus naturally" includes a multifaceted approach that involves rest, proper nutrition, targeted exercises, and potentially seeking chiropractic care. By adopting an anti-inflammatory diet rich in fruits, vegetables, quality proteins, healthy fats, and supplements, you can support the body's healing process and reduce inflammation. Implementing exercises that focus on a range of motion, strength training, balance, and specific knee exercises can aid in recovery and prevent future injuries. Additionally, chiropractic care can provide valuable soft tissue therapies and pain management techniques to promote flexibility and enhance healing.Also Read: Optimizing Fertility by Realigning Body Structure With Chiropractic Care