I have pain or swelling
following a sudden movement, a slip/trip/twist or impact
You are suffering with an acute injury and your GP can provide you with anti-inflammatory medication and suggest you rest. They may refer you for a physiotherapy appointment on the NHS but this may come with a few weeks of waiting for an appointment and in the meantime you could be doing the correct early stage rehabilitation, which will lead to optimum recovery and get you back on track in the fastest possible time.
My pain appeared gradually over time
after doing a repetitive movement such as throwing, racket sports, swimming, cycling, running, lifting, manual work, hairdressing, beauty therapy
You are more than likely suffering with a chronic overuse injury such as tendonitis. A GP will provide anti-inflammatory medication that will help reduce the symptoms but it wont fix the underlying problem. You need an exercise rehabilitation program of stretching and strengthening of specific muscles to correct bio-mechanical abnormalities which will prevent your pain from returning once you stop taking medication.
I have swelling for no apparent reason
either on one or two sides with no associated pain
You should see your GP initially to rule out infection or other illness. If they think the problem is musculoskeletal they will advise you to see a physiotherapist or sports therapist.
I have an area of heat or redness
that appears to be getting bigger
You should see your GP to rule out infection.
I have severe lower back pain at night
that keeps me awake and I find it hard to get back to sleep
You need to see your GP who may want to do a few other tests before recommending you see a physiotherapist or sports therapist for mechanical back pain.
I have tingling or numbness through both the inner thighs
with or without associated lower back pain
You should see your GP as they they may want to refer you to a neurological specialist before you receive any other treatment.
I have neck pain
associated with dizziness/blurred vision/fainting/nausea
You need to see your GP as they may want to refer you to a physiotherapist that specialises in vestibular rehab.
I have neck pain
that came on gradually over time with or without associated tingling/numbness/referred pain in one arm
A Sports Therapist initially can provide you with treatment and exercises to relieve the tension and free any trapped nerves.
I have pain, tingling or numbness in the lower back/buttock/leg
may or may not include the lower part of the leg and the foot
You may be suffering with Sciatica, which can usually be treated simply, and effectively by a physio or sports therapist.