If achy, stiff joints make it tough to get up in the morning, ask your doctor about arthritis.
Arthritis (specifically, osteoarthritis) causes cartilage to break down. After a while, joints don’t work as smoothly as they should. Besides morning inflexibility, arthritis can cause pain after extended inactivity—like standing up after sitting for a while. Arthritis pain also worsens toward the end of the day.
It may be tempting to “self-treat” for arthritis pain relief by limiting movement, but that’s the worst thing to do. Strong evidence supports manual therapy with a physical therapist, exercise, education and weight management as effective interventions against arthritis, according to a recent report in Sports Medicine and Arthroscopy Review.
5 Ways to Find Arthritis Pain Relief
To help you feel better, choose activities that enhance strength and flexibility while balancing weight-bearing and non-weight-bearing exercise. To ease into a routine for arthritis pain relief:
- Begin with low-impact activities like walking, Pilates, aquatic therapy, elliptical training and/or stationary cycling.
- Enhance balance and decrease the risk of falling with yoga or tai chi.
- Start slowly by warming up for at least five minutes.
- Wear well-fitting shoes with shock-absorbing outer soles and insoles that match the contour of each foot.
- Stretch gently when you’re done.
Maintaining proper posture and frequently shifting positions can also lessen stress on joints. When such conservative therapies fail, orthopedic surgery may be an option for you.
Come back Friday for expanded information on ways to relieve arthritis pain.