Don’t Let Arthritis Be a Pain
Learning how best to manage the discomfort that results from your arthritis can make day-to-day life much easier and help you stay as active as you prefer to be.
Hot and cold therapies can be an excellent source of pain and inflammation relief, particularly after you’ve been on your feet all day or using a specific joint more than you typically do. Over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen also help curb the pain, though you should monitor the amount you take carefully, as too much can be harmful to your liver. Other medications effective at treating arthritis pain include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), steroids and many other options you can discuss with your doctor.
Your weight can have a significant impact on pain in joints like your hips and knees. If you live with arthritis, focus on eating a diet that’s rich in whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables and lean protein such as poultry or fish.
Exercising With Arthritis
One way to ease arthritis pain is through exercise. While this may seem counterintuitive—if you’re already in pain, exercise might not be the first thing you consider—exercise actually decreases your pain, boosts your energy levels and provides you with better sleep.
If you’re unsure where to begin, talk to your doctor. Some options to try include:
Tai Chi—This exercise regimen focused around slow, steady movement is good for people looking to start slowly and build flexibility, balance and endurance.
Cycling—If you have trouble with your knees or ankles, this form of exercise is lower-impact than something like jogging.
Swimming—Because of buoyancy, your body is being partly supported by the water, which puts less stress on weight-bearing joints.
For more information, please visit the Claxton-Hepburn Medical Center website.