Arthritis affects more than 30 million adults in the United States. Common symptoms of the condition include pain, swelling, and stiffness of the joints, with the most commonly affected areas being in the hands, knees, and hips. Although arthritis can be caused by overuse of the joints, it can be genetic too. Although you cannot eliminate your chances of getting arthritis completely, there are things you can do to reduce the risk. Here are five ways to relieve and treat arthritis.
Regular Physical Activity
Keeping active and incorporating regular physical exercise into your routine can not only help you maintain a healthy weight but also help keep your joints active. Whether you plan to sign up to the gym or workout from home, there are lots of activities that you can pick from to enjoy. If you have started to experience symptoms of arthritis, it may be best to stick with low-impact exercises like yoga or swimming.
Maintain a Healthy Body Weight
No matter your weight, arthritis can affect anyone, however, the more excess weight you have, the more pressure you will put on your weight-bearing joints, especially in your knees and hips. Being overweight is one of the largest risk factors when it comes to developing arthritis, making it more important than ever to maintain a healthy body weight, especially as you get older. Following a balanced diet will help keep your weight in a healthy range.
Use Effective Stress Management Techniques
If you lead a busy lifestyle, high-stress levels can result in physical tension and pressure on your joints, which can increase your risk of developing arthritis. There are lots of things that you can do to reduce stress levels, such as trying breathing exercises to keep you calm. While stress management won’t prevent arthritis by itself, it will help you when it comes to leading a healthy lifestyle.
Use Hot and Cold Therapy
If you experience arthritis pain, hot and cold treatments can make a huge difference. For example, having a long, warm bath in the morning can help ease any stiffness in your joints. There are cold treatments that you can try out too, which can help relieve swelling, inflammation, and joint pain. Simply wrap a gel ice pack in a towel and place it on painful joints, which will provide quick relief.
Seek Medical Treatment
If you believe you are developing arthritis, it’s important that you seek medical treatment as soon as possible. The earlier your condition is diagnosed, the better, especially when it comes to finding treatments that work best for you. An orthopedic doctor specializes in treating those with arthritis so you may want to check out Yale Medicine for more information. Yale Medicine have plenty of tips on how to prepare for your visit to see an orthopedic doctor, as well as locations in your area where you can make an appointment.
If your arthritis is having a big impact on your day to day life, it’s important that you seek medical treatment as soon as possible. Whether you experience pain, stiffness, or swelling of the joints, there are things you can do to be more in control of the condition, such as by doing regular exercise, maintaining a healthy body weight, as well as using hot and cold therapy.