How to Know the Difference Between Muscle Pain and Joint Pain

How to Know the Difference Between Muscle Pain and Joint Pain

Debra Murray

Joint and muscle pain are both so common that people often get them confused. They are actually two different medical conditions. Doctors refer to muscle pain as “myalgia” and joint pain is called “arthralgia.” Each one has to be cared for in a specific way, so it is important to understand the different symptoms between them. 

 

How to Tell if it is Muscle Pain 

Muscle pain is caused by different injuries than joint pain is. Usually, a person gets it when they overexert themselves, or they develop inflammation because of an illness. Tension and stress can contribute to it as well. 

 

The symptoms of a muscle injury are very specific. First, there is a considerable amount of pain and soreness in the area. Then, muscle spasms where the muscle tightens and relaxes without purposefully being flexed begin. Weakness and stiffness in the muscle can also develop. If the muscle pain is caused by a virus or an infection, a person may get a fever too. 

 

Muscle pain gets better when the area is exercised. That is because the movement helps to release toxins and lactic acid that have built up inside. For this reason, doctors often recommend that patients who are suffering from this condition use a joint and muscle pain relief cream before they do some gentle stretches or physical therapy to soothe it. 

 

How to Tell if it is Joint Pain 

Joint pain comes from falls or blows to a joint, which tears the ligaments and tendons in the region. People also develop it from arthritis or diseases that attack the tissue and it can be caused by a fracture in the bones where they closely connect together. 

 

Swelling is very prominent in a joint injury. The area may appear to be twice its normal size. It will also feel warm to the touch and look slightly red. The muscles that surround the affected joint will hurt too. 

 

Unlike muscle pain, moving a joint won't make it feel better. In fact, it will increase the pain. Exercise doesn't reduce the inflammation or help mend the tendons or ligaments. The joint has to be rested for much longer. If the tendons or ligaments are completely severed, surgery is required to reattach them, and this causes further “down time.” Once the pain is reduced, movement has to be resumed, or the joint will become stiff and weak, which could put someone at risk for injuring it again. 

 

It is important to mention that it is possible for someone to have joint and muscle pain at the same time. There could be a disease present in the body that causes inflammation to spread through an entire limb, which often occurs with Lyme disease or lupus or serious injury could damage a larger region of the body. So if the symptoms seem to be muddled together, be sure to report this to your doctor. Always remember, joint and muscle pain can both be relieved with natural pain relief products from BLUESPRING.

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