Health Issues

I was thinking about Shtinkykat's reply to this post. She said "a high deductible health plan is the way to go, esp. if you're young and healthy." I have the young part down, but I'm starting to wonder about the healthy.

A few years ago (maybe as many as 8), I was playing tennis with my dad, and something happened to my knee. The details are a bit fuzzy in my memory, but I think I twisted it. It was fine after a few days, but ever since then, I've noticed a popping sound and sudden pain (lasting for a minute or so) in that knee when I got up from a sitting position. It used to happen rarely so I pretty much ignored it, but I've been noticing it happening more lately. Maybe it's from the cold (other than last week, when it climbed into the 80s, it's been the coldest I've ever felt since I was a child - though I have to admit, that's no lower than the 30s). I've also noticed a twinge when I'm on the exercise bike, or going up/down stairs. My mom tells me a bad knee "runs in the family."

On Friday morning, I woke up with a painful wrist (bending it downward hurts, as does bending it upwards, though to a lesser extent). I had been doing some heavy lifting at my job last week, so I assume that coupled with my daily computer use has aggravated my wrist (or elbow, since I've read that the problem usually originates elsewhere).

I have 3 doctor's visits (at $30 each), before I have to start paying towards my deductible. I've already used up one. I'm going to the dermatologist tomorrow, so that should use up #2. Maybe instead of running to the doctor for my wrist/knee issues, I should be focusing on exercising more. There were some simple exercises that a couple sites recommended (straight leg raises, maybe using the Hand Helper, or wrist grips).

Has anyone out there dealt with similar knee/wrist issues, and do you recommend a free way to fix them?


Over the Cubicle Wall said...

My knees are both started giving me problems in my mid twenties. The best things I have done for them are to keep my weight down, do consistent walking and biking (non impact), and avoid high stress exercise. I no longer run or play ultimate frisbee or basketball. As hard as those things were to give up, I just don't have the knees for it. After I dropped about 50 pounds, they felt much better, and I can do low impact things all I want.

I also take glucosamine/chondroitin daily. It is not free, but has come down in cost dramatically since I started taking it about 7 years ago. Also stretching and balancing exercises help.

Sunflowers said...

@OTCW: Was the glucosamine recommended to you by your doctor? What are its benefits?

My weight is in the "normal" range (I'm hovering around 145, and am 5'7), but I am trying to lose 20 lbs, so maybe that will help. I assume tennis would be considered high impact... and it's really not something I want to cut out. :( I'll try the knee strengthening exercises, try to exercise consistently, and try to lose some weight, and hopefully things will improve.

Thanks for your comment!

Shtinkykat said...

Ooh. Sorry to hear about your knee and wrist problems. I don't have much experience with either but will getting a brace help either? You might be able to pick up a non-prescription ones at the pharmacy. Take care, Sunflowers.

Over the Cubicle Wall said...

My mom's doctor recommended that she try it for her arthritis. My brother and I both use it now. It got rid of the popping/cracking sound in our knees when we bend them. It took several months to really kick in, and also helped with normal joint aches and pains.

It is supposed to help build cartilage, and cushion the knee, but I don't think their is any FDA type proof on it. Because it is not considered a drug, it is not very regulated, and quality varies by brand. Research before you buy is my advice.

Sunflowers said...

I've decided I'm just going to go ahead and make a doctor's appointment... hopefully she can point me in the right direction re: exercise, vitamins, etc. Thanks for your concern everyone. :)

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