Joint Dysfunction

What is it?

Restrictive or painful movement at a joint due to inefficient movement patterns or underlying disease.


Joint dysfunction can lead to reduced mobility, impaired balance, as well as chronic pain and discomfort.

Therapy can help manage joint dysfunction in individuals with chronic conditions, such as osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis.

Our treatment techniques can be combined within a treatment plan tailored to the specific needs and goals of each patient.

The goal of treatment for joint dysfunction is to improve joint function and mobility, reduce pain and swelling, and promoting overall health and wellness.


Our therapists use several techniques to manage joint dysfunction, including:

  • Manual therapy: use of manual techniques, such as joint mobilization and manipulation to improve joint function and reduce pain.

  • Exercise therapy: use of exercises to improve joint range of motion, strength, and stability, reducing the risk of further joint damage and improving joint function.

  • Education: education regarding proper posture, body mechanics, and movements to reduce the risk of further joint damage and improve joint function.

  • Modalities: use of modalities, such as acupuncture, heat or ice therapy, electrical stimulation, and ultrasound to reduce pain and improve joint function.

  • Activity modification: recommendations regarding changes to daily activities or work environment to reduce the risk of further joint damage and improve joint function.

  • Assistive devices: recommendations regarding the use and proper fitment of assistive devices, such as braces or crutches, to reduce the stress on the affected joint and improve joint function.

Signs & Symptoms

Discomfort or aching in the affected joint.

Reduced mobility or range of motion in the affected joint.

Increased fluid accumulation in the affected joint.

A feeling where the joint is giving way or unable to support normal weight-bearing activities.

An abnormal shape or position of the affected joint.


High-impact injuries: high velocity, acceleration, and deceleration of the joint can increase risk for joint injuries.

Repetitive stress: repeated movements, with muscle imbalances or compensations, can damage and wear out joint tissues. Overuse injuries such as as tendinitis, can cause inflammation and pain to occur in the affected joint.

Some injuries that occur alongside joint-related injuries are sprains, strains, tears, and fractures.

Osteoarthritis: excessive joint wear and tear resulting in cartilage degeneration, which can cause pain and reduce mobility.

Rheumatoid arthritis: a chronic autoimmune disease that causes inflammation in the joints, leading to pain, stiffness, and loss of function.

Overuse injuries: such as tendinitis, which can cause inflammation and pain in the affected joint

Congenital conditions, such as hip dysplasia, can cause abnormal joint function from birth.

Vitamin deficiencies: such as Vitamin B12 deficiency, which can cause nerve damage and symptoms such as numbness and tingling.

Risks if left untreated

Pain in the affected joint and surrounding areas can result from joint dysfunction, leading to decreased mobility and decreased quality of life.

Over time, joint dysfunction can lead to joint degeneration (such as osteoarthritis), which can result in chronic pain, limited mobility, and decreased quality of life.

As joint dysfunction can lead to pain, this may result in the inhibition of muscles. Without proper stabilization, the joint may become unstable.

Pain and limited mobility associated with joint dysfunction can limit one’s ability to participate in physical activity leading to decreased fitness levels.

Joint dysfunction can cause compensation in other areas of the body, which can lead to secondary conditions.

This may result in the onset of muscle dysfunction, nerve dysfunction, movement imbalances, and postural imbalances.