It is always better to prevent meniscus injuries rather than try to fix them after they happen, however that is not always the situation. In any case, there are a number of things you can do to keep your knee and leg healthy and prevent further damage.
To stabilize your knee joint and increase your range of motion, maintain and build the strength and flexibility of your quadriceps, hamstrings, calf muscles and hip flexors. Strengthening and stretching exercises will help to keep your knee strong and supple, which will prevent further injuries (leg lifts with light weight or exercise bands are very beneficial). Proprioceptive (balancing) exercises will help retrain your position or “joint sense”.
A regular exercise program that focuses on total body fitness and includes low-impact aerobic activity such as walking, swimming or biking will also strengthen your knee and keep you healthy overall.
Choose appropriate equipment for your body type and size; for example wear shoes that fit your feet and are suitable for your sport. Use knee supports as required during activities (bracing/strapping/taping your knee for extra support).
Avoid doing too much to soon to give your body an opportunity to build up its endurance. This is especially important when participating in a new activity. Gradually increase your participation to prevent overstraining your muscles. Always warm up and cool downyour leg muscles before and after working them, and learn the proper form and techniques for your activity.
If you are suffering from knee or meniscus pain, listen to your body anddecrease, modify and/or avoid any activities or motions that cause pain and irritation (twisting, squatting, kneeling, heavy lifting, climbing and running, walking on uneven terrain). If you are required to perform these motions at work or play and cannot avoid them, make sure you take frequent breaks and rest your knee to prevent fatigue.
If you suffer from mild inflammation or pain after certain activities or movements, implement RCE – when you complete the activity, then rest your knee, apply a cold pack, compress, and elevate your knee. You can also use anti-inflammatory medication for pain if required.
If you have been given a treatment plan by your health professional, make sure you adhere to it to ensure pain free living. In general, people who are committed to their therapies and exercises will have the best medical outcomes.