Osteoporotic bone disease, also known as osteoporosis, makes your bones brittle and prone to fractures. It can also cause severe pain in the neck, spine, and ankles. It is typically a disease of menopausal women, but it can affect men, too. People who have osteoporosis with subsequent ankle pain may be at risk for balance problems and falls. Because of this, the following ankle pain relief treatment options should be considered to reduce your risk.
Bisphosphonate medication is a commonly prescribed osteoporosis drug because it helps prevent further bone density loss. According to a National Institutes Of Health article, bisphosphonates can help improve ankle pain caused by osteoporotic changes.
Not only can bisphosphonates provide significant ankle pain relief, but they can help make your ankles stronger so that if you were to sustain a fall, you would be less likely to fracture your ankle. While bisphosphonate drugs are considered safe and usually well-tolerated by most people who take them, they can cause significant side effects. They include digestive problems such as heartburn and nausea, headaches, muscle pain, and rashes.
Bisphosphonates can also raise the risk for a rare adverse reaction known as osteonecrosis of the jaw where the jaw bone becomes exposed as a result of poking through the gum tissue. When this happens, parts of the jaw bone may become necrotic, which refers to tissue death. If you develop side effects or if you can see parts of your exposed jaw bone, see your doctor right away.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs are excellent standalone treatments for ankle pain relief. They can also be taken in conjunction with bisphosphonates to further relieve ankle pain. Over-the-counter NSAIDs include ibuprofen and naproxen sodium, and while non-prescription strength NSAIDs may be sufficient to relieve your ankle pain, you may need prescription-strength anti-inflammatory drugs, from time to time.
Aspirin is also an excellent anti-inflammatory pain reliever, however, it can heighten your risk for abnormal bleeding, including bleeding in the gastrointestinal tract, urinary tract, and rarely, the brain. Furthermore, if you take prescription anticoagulant medications to lower your risk for a heart attack, aspirin may not be suitable for you.
Because NSAIDs can cause stomach upset and acid reflux, certain people with digestive sensitivities may be unable to take them. For these people, acetaminophen may be a better choice because it is less likely to cause digestive problems.
It is important to note, that while acetaminophen can provide you with ankle pain relief, it does not help reduce ankle joint inflammation, which is common in those with osteoporosis and other degenerative bone diseases such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Another important component in your ankle pain relief treatment plan is physical therapy. Not only does physical therapy help provide ankle pain relief, but it can also help strengthen your foot and ankle bones and their surrounding structures. The exercises performed during your physical therapy sessions can also help promote circulation and blood flow to osteoporotic bones in your feet and ankles.
Another benefit of physical therapy is that it may help enhance the quality of your sleep. People suffering from severe ankle pain may be unable to enter into the recuperative and restorative phases of sleep because of their discomfort. Therapeutic exercises promote the release of endorphins, which are thought to have pain relief properties. Endorphins may also play a role in relieving anxiety, which can also be caused by severe ankle and other types of osteoporotic pain.
Before you go to physical therapy, take your pain medications so that by the time you get there your ankles will feel better, allowing you greater mobility and range of motion for performing your exercises.
If you have osteoporosis, consider the above ankle pain relief options. With appropriate pain relief interventions and regular visits with your podiatrist, ankle pain can be well-managed so that you can do the things that you love with better mobility and more strength.
Reach out to a company like Scola Podiatry for more information on ankle pain relief and management.