First off, check first some simple tips to relieve arthritis pain and preventing arthritis through exercise. Afterward, find out how water exercise and yoga relieve arthritis pains.
10 Easy Tips for Arthritis Pain Relief
Think you can’t stop that arthritis pain? Great news! You can act now. Get 10 super easy and effective arthritis pain relief tips from arthritis experts and make your life with arthritis a little easier now.
1. Protect your joints.
Don’t keep your joints in the same position for a prolonged period of time. Balance your rest and work throughout the day. Use the strongest joints available for the job.
2. Stretch it.
Stretching should be part of every arthritis patient’s daily routine.
A good stretch helps prevent injuries by warming up muscles and tendons which are more limber and less likely to tear.
Spend at least 10 minutes each day stretching, and work each major muscle group.
3. Cool it down.
Stop physical activity. Rest in a cool or shaded environment.
Spray with a mist of cool water or wrap an ice pack or cold compress in a towel and apply it to reduce arthritis pain and swelling.
4. Get moving.
Exercise can help reduce joint pain and stiffness and increases flexibility and muscle strength.
It can also help with weight control, stress management, and make you feel better overall. The Arthritis Foundation also offers water exercise and other classes.
5. Get a massage.
Massage therapy can relieve your pain, soothe stiff sore muscles, reduce inflammation and swelling.
Make sure you use oil or cream on your fingers to make it more gentle. Work the area for five to ten minutes a day if possible.
6. Keep your weight in balance.
Being overweight, even just moderately, impacts weight-bearing joints and can increase the pain of arthritis.
Studies have indicated that losing extra weight lowers the risk for developing osteoarthritis of the knee. Losing weight can help slow the progression of arthritis too.
7. Get a diagnosis.
If you are experiencing symptoms like pain, stiffness, swelling for more than 1 weeks, you should consider seeing your doctor and getting a diagnosis.
Remember that there are more than 100 types of arthritis. It is important to get the specific diagnosis for the type of arthritis you have.
8. Take your medication the right way.
Don’t stop taking your medication just because you feel it is not working. Check with your doctor first.
You need to understand that it may take several days to several months for a medication to become effective.
9. Look out for new options.
Recently FDA has approved some new drugs for osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and other arthritis diseases.
If feel that the current medication doesn’t work well, check with your doctor about possible new options.
10. Keep educating yourself.
It is important to learn something new about arthritis. Find some good websites online and subscribe to their newsletter if they have it.
Join one of two active online arthritis communities like forums or bulletin board. Never hesitate to see your doctors and ask questions.
Exercise and Arthritis
Your bones hang out in a lot of joints. Knee joints. Hip joints. The joints in your fingers and the joints in your toes.
Wherever bones meet, there is also cartilage, a rubbery, protective layer that ensures your joints bend smoothly and painlessly. But even cartilage cannot do this tremendous job alone.
A thin membrane called the “synovium” provides the fluid that lubricates the moving parts of the joint. When the cartilage wears out of the synovium becomes inflamed, the result is generally a case of “osteoarthritis” or “rheumatoid arthritis.”
In osteoarthritis, the cartilage can be eroded so much that bone does rub on bone. Thos type of arthritis develops gradually over a lifetime as a simple result of the wear and tear placed on your joints over the years. Very few people escape some degree of osteoarthritis, though the severity varies a great deal.
As a matter of fact, if you are over the age of 50, you are likely to have at least one joint affected by osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis affects men and women equally and is by far the most common type of arthritis, with almost 16 million Americans in the list.
In rheumatoid arthritis, damage to the synovium is at the source of trouble. Doctors and researchers are not absolutely sure what causes it, but most think that rheumatoid arthritis is a disease in which the immune system actually attacks certain tissues in the body, including those that connect the joints and the synovium.
Rheumatoid arthritis begins with swollen, red, stiff, and painful joints, but it may progress until scar tissue forms in the joint or, in extreme cases, until the bones actually fuse together.
Almost 75% of the 2 million people with rheumatoid arthritis in the United States are women. The disease can hit as early as teen years.
Exercise – Your Prevention Options
Investing a little time in developing a good weight-bearing low-impact exercise and stretching plan can add up to great results when it comes to staving off arthritis pain. Strong muscles help protect the joints from wear and tear, and the movement keeps joints flexible.
That is why the quest for fitness is at hand, even if you are 50 years and over. However, most Americans over 50 are still right where they always were sitting back and watching others jog by.
Most of them contend that that is just for people who have been athletic all their life, or some say exercise is for young people and engaging into exercise will do them more harm than good.
There are still some that insist on excusing their selves in exercise routines because they do not just have time or they have less energy than ever before. These are all lame excuses. Hence, it is time to start to get rid of those pains. Start exercising.
Consequently, preventing arthritis is not an exact science, but physicians have discovered a few ways to lower your risk. Here is how:
1. Do not weight around
The single most important measure anyone can take to prevent osteoarthritis of the knee is to lose weight if they are overweight. Extra weight puts extra stress on your knees.
If you are 10 pounds overweight, for example, you put 60 pounds per square inch of extra pressure on your knees every time you take a step. That extra pressure can slowly but surely erode the cartilage in your knees, leading to arthritis.
A study has clearly supported the theory that weight loss weighs in on the side of prevention. In the study, overweight women who lost 11 pounds or more over a 10-year period decreased their risk of developing osteoarthritis of the knee by 50%.
2.Stretch those muscles
Any kind of stretching is good as long as you do not bounce, which can lead to a muscle pull. This is according to some of the professors of clinical medicine in New York City.
Try to hold a slow, steady stretch for 15 to 20 seconds, then relax and repeat. It is best to flex up by stretching before any exercise, especially running and walking. But it is also a good idea to stretch each day.
Ask your doctor to teach you stretches that focus on potential arthritis trouble spots, such as the knees or the lower back.
3. Walking is always the best exercise
Take a good long walk at least three times a week or participate in a step-aerobics or low-impact exercise routine maximum results.
There is no proof that running is bad for the joints, but remember, it may aggravate an injury if you already have one. Just remember to check with your doctor before starting a new exercise program.
The bottom line is that of all the healthful habits, exercise is the most important. This is because people are designed to be active. Hence, it is really important for people to exercise in order to stay healthy and keep those joints free from wear and tear.
Just keep in mind that the unexercised body, even if free from the symptoms of illness or problems like arthritis, is not at its full potential. Hence, start exercising right now!
Water Exercise for Arthritis Relief – Fun & Effective
Everybody knows exercise is a significant part of staying healthy. As anyone with arthritis can tell you, though, when your joints say no to play, exercise goes from pleasurable and stimulating activity into a trial of how much pain you can tolerate.
The tendency when suffering from arthritis is to keep your joints as motionless as possible. The problem is that this leads to weakening of the muscles and tendons and a stiffening of joints, which makes the pain worse over time. It is a self-feeding cycle difficult to break out of.
One solution comes in the form of The Arthritis Foundation Aquatics Program, a warm water exercise program designed by the Arthritis Foundation.
Why warm water exercise? The warmth offered by hot water allows muscles to relax and intensifies circulation of blood to the joints. In fact, ever since the discovery of the first hot springs, humans have used the miracle of warm water baths to fight aching joints.
Besides reducing the pain in your joints, exercising in water permits body weight to be supported. This makes exercising in water easier, safer and more relaxing. Not only that, but the resistance that water provides as your body moves in it helps strengthen muscles
These days, what with spas, health clubs, and backyard hot tubs, just about anyone has access to a pool of hot water to relax in.
Not only does this bring some immediate relief of arthritis symptoms, but it also provides us with a great environment in which we can exercise.
You should consult your doctor before beginning water exercise. Water exercise is completely safe for most people, with a few exceptions. If you’ve have suffered serious joint damage or replacement surgery you may be among them.
Your doctor will know what’s right for you. Also be aware of temperature. Water between 83 and 88 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal for exercise. Anything over 100 degrees may be relaxing, but can lead to overheating. After you’ve gotten the doctor go ahead, it’s time to get started.
The Arthritis Foundation Aquatics Program exercises can be found in the free brochure “Water Exercise: Pools, Spas and Arthritis” from the Arthritis Foundation.
Classes are also offered at local pools nationwide—contact your local Arthritis Foundation office for information. The classes are lead by a trained instructor, usually last between 45 minutes to an hour and are scheduled 2 to 3 times a week.
With a doctor’s guidance, whether at a local pool or at home, a water exercise program is a fun and effective way to combat arthritis and keep joints and muscles healthy.
Yoga: The Holistic Treatment for Arthritis Pain Relief
Living with arthritis pain is not something that anyone would like to happen to them. Many people suffer the aches and pains of damaged or inflamed joints.
Some are just uncomfortable, and some become crippled as a result of a disease that has been recognized since prehistoric times but understood only in the past few decades.
Arthritis affects the joints, specifically where the areas in the body where two or more bones meet. There are several different parts of the joint that may be affected by arthritis, such as cartilage, synovium, tendons, and muscles.
The neighboring ends of bones that form the joints are covered by a soft, protective material called cartilage that cushions the bones and keeps them from rubbing together. The joint is also enclosed in a capsule and lined with a tissue called synovium.
The term arthritis covers a group of more than 100 diseases that involve inflammation of joints and discomfort in connective tissues throughout the body. In many parts of the world, the disease is called rheumatism.
Arthritis is a frequent conversational topic because it affects so many people. It is estimated that about one out of every seven people in America have arthritis in some form and the need to find arthritis pain relief is on top of most sufferers’ minds.
It could mean taking a pill, performing gentle exercises, stretching or trying some other means to obtain relief such as yoga.
Yoga is an ancient practice using a system of postures and breath controls, which aim to achieve the perfect union of body, mind, and spirit.
Yoga can be customized to help with a wide range of specific conditions including chronic pain conditions such migraines, fibromyalgia, chronic pain, and arthritis.
Yoga for arthritis pain relief does not necessarily mean bending and contorting the body into weird and impossible positions just to get comfort from the pain.
It is enough that a person suffering from arthritis may practice breathing and self-awareness, the core of yoga practices.
While stretching is certainly involved, yoga is really about creating balance in the body through developing both strength and flexibility. This is done through the performance of poses or postures, each of which has specific physical benefits.
The poses can be done quickly in succession, creating heat in the body through movement (vinyasa-style yoga) or more slowly to increase stamina and perfect the alignment of the pose.
The poses are a constant, but the approach to them varies depending on the tradition in which the teacher has trained.
Yoga poses can be tailored for different joints. A common arthritic problem is swelling of the fingers and knuckle joints.
In this case, if the condition is not too severe and the person suffers mild to moderate pain, a series of poses can be worked on that lengthen and spread the fingers. Hand stretches also create energy flow to the area that eventually moves to the fingers.
Experts say that the heat is really good for the joints. As a therapeutic practice, yoga helps a person create heat through deliberate breathing and movement.