Adults and children alike have been diagnosed with arthritis or other types of rheumatic disease, and according to the Arthritis Foundation (AF), the numbers are expected to grow year after year. The usual physical symptoms of arthritis include pain, decreased movement and stiffness. Someone suffering from arthritis is also more prone to symptoms of depression and anxiety.
What can a person do if they are starting to have or are currently coping with arthritis pain?
1. Exercise more, but don’t overdo it
Regular movement and exercise help maintain flexibility within your joints; however, you need to pick the right exercise and sporting activity for your condition. Running is more damaging to the joints, so picking a low-impact exercise instead is your best bet. Swimming also allows you to flex and move without putting too much strain on your body and joints.
Be sure to focus on stretching throughout the day, as this is a great way to move your joints without too much pressure. Stretching is also beneficial if you are having an off-day and cannot handle your usual exercise regime.
2. Lose weight
Being overweight increases your chance of complications and can cause avoidable extra pressure on your joints. Be sure to exercise and lose weight gradually for the best health benefits.
3. Find a way to manage the pain
There are numerous medications available, but there is also a world of natural remedies too. Be sure to conduct your research beforehand.
You can choose an over-the-counter medication such as ibuprofen, acetaminophen, or naproxen. If this doesn’t work, a cream containing capsaicin is also available. What’s more, finding yourself too dependent on over-the-counter medications is a sign for you to consult your doctor or look for more natural remedies. For instance, CBD oil is proving popular and is incredibly useful when managing arthritis pain. If you are wondering what is the best way to take CBD oil, there are many useful guides out there.
4. Don’t forget about your mental health
Avoid only dealing with physical pain. There is a prevalent link between those with arthritis also suffering from depression; however, doctors have found that treating depression with antidepressants can also help reduce arthritis pain.
5. Try acupuncture
Many people use acupuncture as a means of treating and reducing arthritis pain, but it can take several weeks before you start noticing an improvement.
6. Relaxation therapy
There are many ways to relax, with the most popular being meditation, yoga, writing in a journal, or even listening to music. Relaxation therapy can take some time as you need to find the best way to relax your mind and body – there is no right or wrong answer when it comes to relaxing.
7. Change your diet
Include more fatty acids into your diet. You can do this by taking fish oil supplements, or you can take gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) that is found in plants like evening primrose, hemp and blackcurrants.
It has also recently been considered that turmeric, a yellow spice commonly found in Indian dishes, could help reduce arthritis pain because of its anti-inflammatory properties. While more research is needed, it can’t hurt to add this spice into your cooking.