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For long term pain, I really tried to examine my diet/lifestyle and look for things that were causing chronic inflammation, therefore preventing certain joint ailments from fully healing. I have multiple food allergies so I’m really in-tune with these things and I have ot pay attention or I’ll wreck my week of training. Lack of sleep, stress/cortisol levels, alcohol (this was a big cause for me), certain medications or even mineral deficiencies, specific food issues (gluten, overindulgence in dairy, certain roots like tapioca or potato & nightshades, etc for me) etc.
I also found that studying, learning and dedicating myself to learning Pose technique running helped me to place my food down without the pounding and shearing force across the knee- and that was key to getting my knee to stop having kneecap issues.
Good luck with your journey!