Hip joint pain can have a significant impact on our quality of life at any age. For those who encounter these conditions as Young Adults, the impact can represent quite the struggle. Hip pain can make moving freely up and downstairs, squatting, walking, and even sleeping on the affected side difficult. This pain can often be accompanied by an occasional or frequent snapping or clicking sound that patients find worrisome. If there is no accompanying pain, this clicking or snapping is often nothing to be concerned about.
To begin understanding health concerns that can affect the hip, it helps to understand how your hip functions. Our hip is a ball-and-socket joint, the largest in the human body. The ball-shaped top of the thighbone, also called the femur, fits into the acetabulum. The acetabulum is a cup-shaped socket found in the pelvis. The hip joint is more stable and tighter than the other prominent ball-and-socket joint, the shoulder. However, it also lacks the range of motion of that joint.
Our hips are bound together by numerous tendons, ligaments, and muscles, as well as a joint capsule. Within the joint can be found several bursae, fluid-filled sacs that serve to cushion and lubricate the joint. These sacs also serve to help the tendons and muscles securing the joint to move smoothly.
Hip problems can be the result of various factors. Changes in the bone over time, overuse, infection, tumors, congenital concerns, and even blood supply can be involved. While the actual problem may reside in the hip, it’s common for those experiencing hip problems to feel pain in the thigh or knee. The type of hip pain you have may help your doctor determine the cause of your pain. The specific details of your pain can reveal a lot about the nature of your hip issue:
These represent a limited selection of the kinds of pain that hip pain sufferers may experience. All of these conditions can appear in patients of any age.
Your best first step when addressing the presence of hip pain is speaking to a specialist in joint pain. There are pediatric osteopaths and specialists who can provide specific treatment for these conditions in younger patients.