As a result of daily chores and work related activities, the hip joint may be subjected to undue pressure resulting in gluteus minimus pain. Of the 3 gluteus muscles; the gluteus minimus is the smallest. It is situated under the gluteus medius.  Let us know more about gluteus minimus pain, its causes, symptoms, treatment and exercises.
What is Gluteus Minimus Pain?
The gluteus minimus provides expansion to the capsule of the hip joint and has a stabilizing influence on the hip; as such it is a small yet important muscle that cannot be downplayed. This important muscle aids in mobility functions such as running, walking and jumping; a fact that leaves no doubt about its importance.
Gluteus minimus pain can be a disturbing condition and cause difficulty in performing several activities. We rely on gluteus minimus for all types of lower body mobility functions however gluteus minimus pain can cause distress and agony as well as place limitations of lower body mobility functions. Knowing about the causes of gluteus minimus pain, its symptoms and having information about the treatment and exercises for gluteus minimus pain helps.
Causes for Gluteus Minimus Pain
The causes of gluteus minimus pain can be many, while there are several risk factors too. Some of the commonest causes of gluteus minimus pain include injury or damage to the gluteus minimus muscle, which results in discomfort. Some of the factors that are contributing factors for gluteus minimus injury, resulting in pain include the following.
- Remaining seated for prolonged periods with legs crossed
- Remaining seated while you have stuffed wallet in your back pocket
- Carrying heavy objects while walking from one place to another
- Placing your weight on one side of the body whilst standing
- Carrying heavy objects or kids on one side of the hip
- Having weak leg muscles or not using supportive device, when having a disability or leg injury that results in a limp
Other risk factors that add to the causes of gluteus minimus pain include being overweight or obese, history of falls or accidents with or without noticeable symptoms.
Symptoms of Gluteus Minimus Pain
Acute gluteus minimus pain may be obvious following an injury or fall. However, when pain appears after prolonged period of weakness, it may be difficult to relate it to previous injury. However, knowing the symptoms of gluteus minimus pain can help in identifying the complaints and a possibility of gluteus minimus pain due to previous damage.
Some of the commonest symptoms of gluteus minimus pain include,
- Aches and pains in the hip area
- Pain is elevated while walking
- Pain radiates from the hip to the calf down to the ankle
- Numbness may be felt in the hips, buttocks and thighs
How is Gluteus Minimus Pain Treated?
There are various options for treatment of gluteus minimus pain. Combination therapy that combines exercise and medication can prove to be very beneficial. The commonest approach for treatment of gluteus minimus pain, is a combination of medication, physical therapy, supports and exercise; these include
Anti-Inflammatory Medication – Reducing inflammation, pain and swelling is one of the first courses of treatment for any kind of muscular pain and the same applies here. Doctors often begin treatment of gluteus minimus pain with anti-inflammatory medicines and cold compress to the affected area.
Heat Therapy for Gluteus Minimus Pain – Heat therapy is one of the most effective treatment of gluteus minimus pain, as it helps to relax the muscle and offers great relief. One can use a heating pad or a wrapped hot water bottle and apply heat to the affected area for 15 to 20 minutes at a time.
Wraps and Support for Gluteus Minimus Pain – You could also opt for a wrap designed to support the hip joint during the healing process. When the gluteus minimus is damaged, it requires added support and a customized wrap can help alleviate pressure on the affected area. This too is commonly advised as a part of treatment of gluteus minimus pain.
Exercises for Gluteus Minimus Pain
Exercises can help alleviate and manage any kind of muscular pain including gluteus minimus pain. Detailed below are a few simple exercises for gluteus minimus pain.
Hip Stretches – Hip stretches or outer hip stretches are one of the most effective exercises for gluteus minimus pain. This workout is easy to perform at home; simply lay down straight on your back. Follow it up by positioning one leg straight out and the other bent at the knee. Next; place your foot of the bent leg under the right knee and move on to stretching your hip even as you get the insides of the bent leg to touch the surface below you. Pull your knee down and hold it in this position for 10 to 30 seconds; Repeat the same process with the other leg.
Sitting Gluteus Minimus Stretch – Take a seated position on the floor while placing the bottom of one of your feet against the insides of the thigh on the opposite leg, all the while keeping the opposite leg stretched out in front of you. Now bend forward at your waist and maintain this stance for up to 30 seconds. This workout stretches and even strengthens the gluteus minimus thus proving an important exercise for gluteus minimus pain.
In conclusion, it must be stated the gluteus minimus pain is a serious concern for many individuals and can result in discomfort. Failure to deal with the problem appropriately; can lead to debilitating pain and discomfort that can affect mobility to a large extent. As the symptoms of gluteus minimus pain may be easily noticed, seeking medical advice is essential to plan further treatment. Most experts agree that the most effective treatment of gluteus minimus pain is a combination of anti-inflammatory medicines, cold and warm compress, supports and exercises.
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