About 350 million people in the world suffer from arthritis. This painful ailment effects every movement made and can keep us from living life to the fullest. Seniors especially suffer from arthritis. Half of all people 65 and older have this disease. The Mayo Clinic defines arthritis as inflammation of the joints which causes pain, stiffness, and swelling. As you get older, arthritis symptoms tend to get worse. While there is no cure for this condition, there are proven ways to relieve arthritis pain.
One way you can relieve arthritis pain is to lose weight. If you have arthritis in your knees, hips, or feet, losing weight will significantly relieve the pressure on those joints. Less pressure means less pain and more flexibility. Losing weight is easier said than done, but a healthy balance of exercise and diet will help you reach your weight loss goals.
It is hard to get motivated to work out when the arthritis pain is giving you every reason to not move around. Studies have shown that getting exercise is not only good for weight loss, but also good for maintaining flexibility in your joints. Low impact exercises will reduce the amount of pain you experience while exercising. Water workouts are great to start off with because water supports your weight and is buoyant. Water reduces the impact on your joints and creates a natural resistance as you move around. This will relieve arthritis pain once you get into a routine. If you find a heated pool, it has the added benefit of soothing joints while you exercise. As you get stronger and more flexible, you can upgrade to other exercises like weight lifting and cycling.
Hot and Cold Therapy
Hot therapy can help relieve arthritis pain. Try taking a long hot shower in the morning. It will reduce inflammation and give you more flexibility. Heating pads are great for relieving arthritis pain as well. They provide more targeted heating for maximum relief. When applying heat, make sure not to do it longer than 20 minutes, and do not apply heat to skin that is cut or injured.
In addition to heat, cold therapy can reduce swelling and pain when applied to a sore joint. Using an ice pack or bag of frozen vegetables can reduce inflammation – the main cause of arthritis. It is a temporary relief and may be just what you need to get through the day. When applying cold packs, wrap a towel around the pack to give a barrier and prevent irritation. Do not use cold therapy if you have circulatory problems, and make sure to not leave a cold pack on for more than 20 minutes at a time.
Start Relieving Pain Today
Start your arthritis treatment plan today by incorporating these tips into your routine. Talk with your doctor about your plan and any medications that may be useful to take during these activities.