Who's Most at Risk For Hip Pain?

Hip pain is a common medical complaint for both women and men, and teens and kids. Some types of hip pain are minor and temporary, while others can be serious or chronic. Understanding your risks for hip pain is crucial to ensuring you get the medical care you need to prevent your symptoms from getting a lot worse.

At Houston Methodist Orthopedics & Sports Medicine, Dr. Joshua Harris helps patients throughout Houston, Texas, get the individualized care they need to relieve symptoms and restore pain-free movement. Are you more prone to hip pain? Here’s how to tell.

Common causes of hip pain

Hip pain can be divided into two main types:

Less commonly, pain can be caused by a congenital disability that’s present when you’re born.

Osteoarthritis is one of the most common causes of hip pain, especially among older men and women. Arthritis is also more common among dancers, professional athletes, and other people who use their hip joints for strenuous activities. Other common causes of hip pain include:

Depending on the condition you have, you might have pain on the outside of your hip, inside the joint, or near your groin.

Interestingly, sometimes hip pain can occur because of a problem in another area of your body. For instance, if you have a problem with your knee or foot, it might alter how you walk and balance your body weight. Those changes can wind up straining your hip and causing a lot of discomfort in the hip area. Even a problem with your lower back can wind up causing painful symptoms in or around your hip.

Risk factors for hip pain

Even though anyone can have hip pain, some risk factors make hip pain more likely. Older age is one of the most common risk factors for hip pain. That’s because as we get older, all those years of wear-and-tear inside the joint begin to add up. Cartilage breakdown inside the joint can contribute to inflammation, leading to a widespread cause of hip pain: osteoarthritis.

If you’ve had a previous hip injury, you can also be at a greater risk of future hip pain, mostly if the injury was severe or the hip did not heal properly. Being overweight is another risk factor — not surprising, considering your hips need to bear all those extra pounds all day long. Like older age, prior injury, and excess weight are also risk factors for developing arthritis in the hip.

Maybe you play a lot of strenuous sports or have a job that puts a lot of strain on your hips. In that case, you could also be more susceptible to injuries. Part of that is due to increased wear and tear on the hips, and part is because these activities might put you at greater risk for fractures, strains, or tendon or ligament tears. On the other hand, if you lead a very inactive, sedentary lifestyle, weak hip muscles can leave you more vulnerable to discomfort and injury.

You don’t have to live with hip pain

Even minor hip pain can take a significant toll on your health, lifestyle, and well-being. As a top-ranked orthopedic surgeon in Houston, Texas, Dr. Harris is skilled in diagnosing the cause of hip pain and developing custom treatment plans using surgical and nonsurgical approaches. To find out what’s causing your hip pain — and how to relieve it — call the practice at 713-244-6395 or use our online form to book an office visit today.

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