Sitting baby in white vest attempting to stretch forward to reach a cuddly toy.

Can You Grow Out Of Hypermobility?

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You may have heard that children can grow out of hypermobility. This is true and is good news for them. But after a certain point, it’s very unlikely that you’ll get rid of your hypermobility.

Let’s find out more about the chances of growing out of hypermobility and whether it’s possible for symptoms to lessen with age.

Can you grow out of hypermobility?

Adults with hypermobility will not grow out of their condition. Hypermobility is a genetic condition, so your DNA dictates that you’ll be hypermobile. 

As you cannot alter your DNA, your hypermobility will stick and it’s possible that you’ll pass it on to your own children.

Can a child grow out of hypermobility?

Most children are naturally bendier than adults. This is normal and isn’t anything to worry about. Research shows that up to 50% of children under 10 years of age are hypermobile.

Joints typically stiffen with age, so most children will grow out of hypermobility. 

However, if they have a hypermobility syndrome, such as hEDs or HSD, they won’t grow out of the condition.

Similarly, hypermobile children with one or two hypermobile parents are less likely to lose their hypermobility. This is because hypermobility is genetic and there’s between a 50% and 75% chance that the child will remain hypermobile.

Does hypermobility go away?

Sadly, not. Hypermobility is a permanent condition that doesn’t go away. You can’t grow out of hypermobility, but your symptoms can change. The range of movement you have in your joints may get less lax too. 

Can hypermobility decrease with age?

Yes, hypermobility can decrease with age. The older people get, the tighter their joints typically get. As a result, the joints have a smaller range of movement. 

But this reduced flexibility may not be solely to do with age. Joint laxity is known to increase the risk of osteoarthritis (OA). You most likely know OA as a type of arthritis that causes cartilage damage and joint pain.

People with OA are less likely to use their joints because of this pain. So, it can be argued that OA decreases hypermobility.

Does hypermobility improve with age?

In children, hypermobility can improve with age. However, if the hypermobility is still prevalent by the time the child is 10 years old or, if they experience pain, fatigue, and other hypermobility syndrome-related symptoms, it’s unlikely to go away.

Adults don’t tend to experience an improvement in their hypermobility naturally. Any improvement is usually the result of medication, exercise, and lifestyle changes.

Can you grow out of hEDS?

Once you’ve been given a diagnosis of hEDS, you’ve got it for life. hEDS doesn’t ever go away, but there are things you can do to make living with hEDS more comfortable. 

These include:

  • Having physiotherapy
  • Exercising regularly
  • Eating healthily
  • Pacing yourself
  • Using medical aids and supports, such as knee braces
  • Wearing comfortable, supportive shoes
  • Staying hydrated
  • Taking supplements

Can you make yourself less hypermobile?

Technically, you can make yourself less hypermobile. But we don’t advise doing this as the only way is to limit physical activity. This is not good for your physical or mental health.

By avoiding all physical activities, your joints will stiffen. However, the outcome will be stiff, painful, tight joints. 

You’ll also be at increased risk of arthritis, osteoporosis, and diabetes. Inactivity also causes weight gain which puts extra stress on your joints and increases pain.

With this in mind, it’s better to manage your hypermobility than try to get rid of it.

Final thoughts

Some people will grow out of hypermobility when they’re young. Others will have the condition for life. On the plus side, you can lessen the impact of your symptoms by taking care of your health and putting a robust plan into place.

Author

  • Amy

    Amy lives with hypermobility spectrum disorder (HSD). She spent years not knowing what was wrong with her body, before eventually being diagnosed in her 30s. She has two young children - both of whom are hypermobile.