Characterized by pain, swelling, and limited range of motion, arthritis is the inflammation of joints that stem from factors like poor bone, muscle and tissue health; intense physical activities that put a lot of pressure on joints, and overweight. There are several forms of arthritis, but the most common among them include osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Apart from that, psoriatic arthritis, fibromyalgia, gout, and lupus, etc., are common forms of joint arthritis.
In the US, approximately 54 million adults and 300,000 babies have arthritis. And it is believed that by 2040, almost 78 million people in America will be struggling from arthritis.
People with this problem experience a tremendous increase in pain while performing the activities of daily living that involve bending and twisting. It’s a kind of problem that leads to debilitating pain that not only has a tremendous impact on a person’s physical health, but also leads to a variety of mental health problems such as stress, anxiety, and depression.
In the US, nearly two-thirds of the people struggling with arthritis pain are between 18-64 years of age, which means it’s a condition that can impact your career severely; therefore, it’s vital to take effective treatment.
Here is how you can manage arthritis pain.
Seek Aquatic Therapy
Whether you are struggling with osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, psoriatic arthritis or lupus, seeking aquatic therapy can bring a world of difference in the reduction of pain. Besides, it will also help you increase your flexibility and range of motion.
According to Crestview Physical Therapy in Crestview FL, “Aquatic therapy is perfect for treating arthritic joints. The water helps to provide compression, resulting in less swelling. Besides, the buoyancy of the water unweights the joint, allowing a greater range of motion without the weight of the body compressing joints together.”
And the best part is that anyone from small children and teenagers to adults and seniors can reap the benefits of aquatic therapy. During the therapy session, arthritis patients have to perform underwater exercises under the supervision of a well-trained therapist.
It not only enhances the strength but also boosts the coordination of muscle groups. Apart from managing arthritis pain, aquatic therapy is also essential for strengthening muscles, reducing low back pain, and healing injuries.
Focus on Stretching Exercises
Stretching exercises are highly essential for arthritis patients because they not only boost their flexibility and range of motion but also increase blood flow to muscles, relieve stress, and reduce pain. Some of the best stretching exercises for managing arthritis pain include leg swings, cat-cow, side stretches, leg raise, shoulder blade rotations, and hamstring stretch, etc.
According to NCBI, stretching exercises that people perform during the warm-ups before starting their actual workout sessions, reduce passive stiffness and increase the range of movement.
So, if you are thinking of introducing an exercise routine in your life, make sure that you perform quality stretching exercises before starting each session.
Start Weight Training
Weight training is one of the best ways to get rid of arthritis pain. Most people believe that weight training will have a negative impact on their affected joints, which is entirely incorrect.
Although it’s true that people with arthritis pain find it difficult to lift weights; however, if they somehow start it once, and stick to their routine, they can see a tremendous difference in their health very soon.
According to the Arthritis Foundation, “Two or three weekly 20- to 30-minute, weight-training sessions are sufficient to start reaping noticeable benefits within four to 12 weeks, such as improved energy and muscle tone. ” It also says that within six months, most people who stick to this routine enhance their strength by 40% and more.
However, when you start weight training, it is also essential for you to give your body the kind of relaxation it deserves. So, make sure that you devote one day in a week for recovering.
Stick To Short Walks
Walking is an ideal exercise for arthritis patients because it improves joint mobility. Besides, it is also crucial for increasing cardiovascular fitness. It also reduces the risk of heart disease and stroke apart from controlling high blood pressure.
Short walks are great to relieve pain and improve flexibility. Make sure that you do not opt for long walks from day one because it can put stress on your joints thereby worsening your pain. You can increase the walking time gradually once you get used to it.
Shed Those Extra Pounds
Overweight is a big problem for arthritis patients because it puts undue stress on the knee, hip and ankle joints. So, if you are also overweight, you should try to shed those extra pounds in the first place. The best way to reduce your weight is to perform exercise regularly.
Overweight is not only a problem for arthritis patients, but it’s equally harmful to those struggling with heart diseases and diabetes.
Apart from that, you should also focus on consuming a balanced diet to maintain an energetic body that can fight inflammation easily.