How To Prevent Arthritis
Though arthritis cannot be completely prevented, you can minimize your risk and control symptoms to some degree by maintaining a healthy weight and remaining active.
For prevention, exercise and strength work should be at the top of your list. The more active you are the better off you will be. Weight-bearing force helps maintain joint health. Strengthening muscles around the joints is also key to reducing pain and taking stress off joints.
Healthy Eating And Arthritis
Your body works best when you eat a wide range of healthy foods. Most people find that they feel better if they eat a balanced and varied diet to get all the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and other nutrients their body needs.
Try to eat a Mediterranean-style diet which includes fish, pulses, nuts, olive oil and plenty of fruit and vegetables. Eating a balanced diet and having an adequate fluid intake can also help provide you with better energy levels, help to maintain your weight, and give you a greater sense of wellbeing, which may improve your symptoms.
Always seek the advice of your doctor or dietitian before changing your diet. You may be restricting your food intake unnecessarily or taking too much of certain products that may have no impact on your condition at all. Some supplements may also interact with your medication.
How To Reduce The Risk
Even though RA increases the risk of heart disease, you can work with your doctor to lower your risk.
One of the easiest ways to protect yourself from heart disease related to RA is taking the medications your doctor prescribes to control the inflammation from RA. Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs reduce the inflammation associated with RA and may reduce the risk of heart disease.
Though people living with RA have an increased risk of heart disease, medical guidelines in the United States dont have specific recommendations to reduce heart disease if you have RA. However, the current European League Against Rheumatism recommends you should be screened every 5 years for risk factors of heart disease.
You can also make some lifestyle changes to help lower your risk of heart disease. The suggests the following tips to reduce the risk of heart disease:
- eating a balanced diet of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains
- getting at least 150 minutes of aerobic exercise per week
- maintaining a moderate weight
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Ruth Asks This Morning Doctor About Milk Helping Arthritis
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Arthritis is not a single disease, but instead a way of referring to joint pain or joint disease. There are more than 100 types of arthritis and related conditions. Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are the two most common types of arthritis. Currently, the NHS notes that there is no cure for arthritis, but there are many treatments that can help slow it down. There are also a number of factors that can increase your risk of developing the condition.
How Can You Reduce Arthritis Inflammation Naturally
While your healthcare provider can prescribe a number of treatments to treat your arthritis inflammation, there are some key steps you can take without medication. These include losing weight, eating anti-inflammatory foods, getting restorative sleep, and even taking certain nutritional supplements.
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Avoid High Impact Exercise
Avoid exercises such as running, plyometrics, and contact sports. Instead, try biking, walking, swimming, or low impact options on exercise videos to protect your joints. Sticking to low impact exercises can also help you prevent major injuries such as a ligament tear, which can contribute to arthritis.
How To Reduce Your Infection Risk
While everyone should take these simple precautions to avoid illnesses, including COVID-19, preventing infections is even more important when you’re taking biologics for psoriatic arthritis. Heres what you can do.
1. Get your yearly flu shot. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone age six months and older get a flu shot. If you are taking biologics for psoriatic arthritis, you must be vaccinated with a shot instead of a nasal spray .
2. Avoid close contact with anyone who is or might be sick. Keep at least six feet away from anyone in your home who is currently sick. When out in public, stay at least six feet away from people who are not in your household.
3. Wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth in public. This is especially important when social distancing measures are difficult to maintain, says the CDC.
4. Wash your hands thoroughly and regularly. This means with soap and water, and for long enough to remove germs. Lather up for about 20 seconds, or the length of time it takes to sing Happy Birthday to yourself twice, and then rinse and dry your hands on a clean towel. Heres when you should wash:
5. Use hand sanitizer. If soap and water arent available, use hand sanitizer thats at least 60 percent alcohol. Cover all hand surfaces and let the gel dry thoroughly.
6. Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and nose. Unless you’ve just washed your hands thoroughly, dont touch your face.
Additional research by Julia Califano.
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What Should I Do If Arthritis Symptoms First Appear
The Arthritis Foundation says there are four important warning signs that may indicate you have arthritis. They include:
- Pain that may be constant or might come and go. It may be in one part of the body or in different areas.
- The skin over an affected joint may become swollen, red or warm when you touch it. Swelling that lasts three days or long over a joint could be a sign of arthritis.
- Stiffness in a joint, when you wake up in the morning or after you sit at a desk or in a car for a long time, could be a sign of arthritis.
- Difficulty moving a joint could indicate arthritis is present.
Arthritis can get steadily worse over time if it is left untreated. Seeking treatment from your physician as soon as possible may help prevent your joints from becoming permanently damaged. It is a good idea to keep a journal to track your symptoms for a few weeks, noting which joints are hurting, when they hurt and for how long they hurt.
The Advanced Orthopaedics Center team can help you get more information about preventing arthritis and can help determine if you have arthritis. Please feel free to contact us.
Who Is At Risk For Developing Arthritis
Millions of Americans are living with arthritis. This inflammatory condition causes pain and can limit mobility. When you think of arthritis, older adults likely come to mind, and its true, age is a major risk factor for developing arthritis. However, a number of other factors put you at risk for arthritis, some of which are under your control. At Prima Medicine in Fairfax and South Riding, Virginia, we can help you learn how to best manage these factors and reduce your risk of developing arthritis.
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Preventative Measures For Arthritis
There are over 100 forms of arthritis and some are easier to prevent than others. In some situations, such as autoimmune rheumatoid arthritis, a low-inflammation diet that eliminates sugar and grains can alleviate some symptoms. Eating a diet low in processed foods and saturated fat and rich in fruits, vegetables, fish, nuts and beans can help fight the inflammation caused by osteoarthritis.
Maintaining a healthy weight can also help reduce the pain and take pressure off the joints. Once osteoarthritis develops, exercise can help limit pain and improve overall function, especially a focus on flexibility, aerobic and strengthening exercises. Swimming and cycling are excellent low-impact exercises that will work your muscles but arent hard on your joints.
While theres nothing you can do to completely eliminate your risk for developing arthritis, there are certain steps, like diet and exercise, you can take to be more proactive about your long-term health.
Vitamin D And Fish Oil Supplements May Reduce Risk Of Autoimmune Disease Rheumatoid Arthritis Psoriasis And Thyroid
With a more pronounced effect after two years of supplementation.
Taking daily vitamin D supplements or a combination of vitamin D and omega-3 fish oil appears to carry a lower risk of developing autoimmune disease, with a more pronounced effect after two years, finds a trial of older US adults published by The BMJ today .
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The researchers say the clinical importance of these findings is high, given that these are well-tolerated, non-toxic supplements, and that there are no other known effective therapies to reduce rates of autoimmune diseases.
Autoimmune disease happens when the bodys natural defense system mistakenly attacks normal cells. Common conditions include rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, and thyroid diseases, which increase with age, particularly among women.
Both vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids derived from seafood are known to have a beneficial effect on inflammation and immunity, but no large randomized trials have tested whether these supplements can lower the risk of autoimmune disease.
So researchers set out to test the effects of vitamin D and omega-3 fish oil supplements on rates of autoimmune diseases in 25,871 US adults .
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Diet And Supplements Can Make A Major Difference In The Development Or Disappearance Of Rathere Are Three Things You Need To Know About Rheumatoid Arthritis Especially If Youre A Womanfirst 75 Percentthats Three Out Of Every Four People Diagnosed With Raare Femalesecond 1 To 3 Percent Of All Women Will Be Diagnosed With Ra During Their Lifetimeand Third Although The Direct Causes Of The Disease Are Unknown There Are Known Risk Factorsrisk Factors Mean That Ra May Have Some Genetic Tendencies But Environmental Factors Particularly Diet Can Play A Major Role As Well And In Most Cases Ra Can Gradually Disappear When A Persons Healing Environment And Diet Are Optimizedwhat Is Rheumatoid Arthritisrheumatoid Arthritis Is An Autoimmune Disease That Causes Inflammation Pain And Damage To The Joints Most Commonly Involving The Wrists And Fingers Ra Is Considered A Type Of Inflammatory Arthritis In Contrast To Other Types Of Arthritis Such As Osteoarthritis Which Is A More Common Form Of Arthritis About 13 Million Americans Have Ra16 Diet And Lifestyle
Diet and supplements can make a major difference in the development or disappearance of RA
There are three things you need to know about rheumatoid arthritis , especially if youre a woman.
First, 75 percentthats three out of every four people diagnosed with RAare female.
Second, 1 to 3 percent of all women will be diagnosed with RA during their lifetime.
And third, although the direct causes of the disease are unknown, there are known risk factors.
Risk factors mean that RA may have some genetic tendencies, but environmental factors, particularly diet, can play a major role as well. And, in most cases, RA can gradually disappear when a persons healing environment and diet are optimized.
More Than 24 Million People In The Us Have An Autoimmune Disease
A normally functioning immune system helps prevent illness from infection and disease, but in a person with autoimmune disease, the immune system is too active and mistakenly attacks the bodys own cells and tissues.
There are more than 80 known autoimmune diseases, including conditions such as multiple sclerosis, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and type 1 diabetes. Approximately 5 to 8 percent of people more than 24 million in the United States live with an autoimmune disorder, according to the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences .
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How To Prevent Arthritis Naturally With Diet And Exercise
Did you know that in 2010, 22.7% of adults reported physician-diagnosed arthritis? And that arthritis has a slightly higher prevalence in women than in men ? The high number of arthritis cases may have you wondering how to avoid this chronic illness.
Read on to learn how arthritis affects your body and what you can do to treat or prevent arthritis naturally.
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Kurko J, Besenyei T, Laki J, et al. Genetics of rheumatoid arthritis – a comprehensive review.Clin Rev Allergy Immunol 2013, 45:170-179.
Arthritis Foundation. Arthritis By The Numbers Book of Trusted Facts & Figures. Arthritis Foundation 2019.
American College of a Rheumatology. Rheumatoid Arthritis.
Zaccardelli A, Friedlander HM, Ford JA, Sparks JA. Potential of Lifestyle Changes for Reducing the Risk of Developing Rheumatoid Arthritis: Is an Ounce of Prevention Worth a Pound of Cure?Clin Ther 2019, 41:1323-1345.
Sparks JA, Costenbader KH. Rheumatoid arthritis in 2017: Protective dietary and hormonal factors brought to light.Nat Rev Rheumatol 2018, 14:71-72.
Alunno A, Nikiphorou E, Philippou E, et al. Nutrition in RMDs: is it really food for thought? Focus on rheumatoid arthritis.BMC Rheumatol 2020, 4:10.
Di Giuseppe D, Discacciati A, Orsini N, Wolk A. Cigarette smoking and risk of rheumatoid arthritis: a dose-response meta-analysis.Arthritis Res Ther 2014, 16:R61.
Hu Y, Costenbader KH, Gao X, et al. Sugar-sweetened soda consumption and risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis in women.Am J Clin Nutr 2014, 100:959-967.
Lu B, Hiraki LT, Sparks JA, et al. Being overweight or obese and risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis among women: a prospective cohort study.Ann Rheum Dis 2014, 73:1914-1922.
Wu C, Yosef N, Thalhamer T, et al. Induction of pathogenic T17 cells by inducible salt-sensing kinase SGK1.Nature 2013.
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It’s Easy To Get The Care You Need
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You may be able to minimize wear and tear on your joints with the right kinds of exercise even if you cant escape your genetics or the effects of age.
Osteoarthritis, the most common type of arthritis, primarily affects the hips, knees, shoulders, and hand joints. The cushiony cartilage at the end of bones wears away so that bone rubs on bone. The pain and swelling that result may make it more difficult to move and perform everyday activities.
Moderate exercise helps ease pain and stiffness in your joints. It strengthens your muscles, which in turn protects and supports your joints. Ifarthritis pain, swelling, and stiffness have tempted you to stop moving, think again, says the Arthritis Foundation.
Not exercising can cause your muscles to shrink and weaken and contribute to bones becoming more brittle and more prone to breaking.
Arthritis: What Is It What Causes It And How To Treat It
Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis, and is often blamed on wear and tear. Right now, there are millions of Americans with OA, and their joint pain, swelling and stiffness can become a chronic condition that is felt most commonly in the knees, hips, lower back and neck, but can also effect smaller joints of the feet and hands. This is why its so important to learn as much as possible about arthritis in order take steps to improve your OA now.
After treating many patients with joint pain due to OA, we routinely get questions about how to prevent and/or treat arthritis, and we wanted to answer those common queries so people would understand what causes OA and what can be done to minimize the impact of arthritis.
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What Causes Arthritis
We think that theres largely a genetic predisposition for osteoarthritis. There are components of wear and tear, but thats not the driving force. The arthritis is more likely caused because of the way your cartilage was designed.
Besides genetics, other factors that can contribute to arthritis include major injuries at or around the joint. Breaking a bone or a ligament injury may increase the risk of developing arthritis.
Stress on the joint also contributes to the development of arthritis. Obesity is the most common cause of increased stress on the joints. Inflammation plays a role in the process of arthritis as well, and some forms of arthritis are considered more inflammatory in nature. Less common causes of arthritis include osteonecrosis, which is the loss of blood supply to the bone, and certain childhood conditions affecting the mechanics of the joint.
There is a complex relationship between genetics, injury and mechanical stress, all of which are thought to contribute to the development of arthritis in the joint.
How To Get Moving
Youve probably heard Newtons law that a body in motion tends to stay in motion and a body at rest tends to stay at rest. That fundamental law of nature has important implications for people who want to stay active but have stopped moving due to arthritis pain.
Dr. Michael Raab explains how exercise can reverse joint stiffness, pain, and weakness.
Click play to watch the video or read video transcript.
Is exercise beneficial in the treatment of arthritis?
Physical activity, whether its vigorous exercise or a gentle walk, provides the momentum you need to keep blood flowing, muscles working, and your attitude positive. If you havent been doing much exercise, its best to start gradually. Follow your doctors advice about incorporating these activities into your daily routine:
- Stretching and range-of-motion exercises. Keep muscles and joints flexible.
- Strengthening with resistance bands or light weights. Household items such as cans of soup will also work to help build strength and stability in muscles, bone and cartilage, and prevent injury.
- Aerobic exercise to improve overall fitness. Choose activities that dont put stress on your joints, such as walking, bicycling, or swimming.
Moderate exercise helps ease pain and stiffness in your joints.
If your joints are especially painful, swollen, and stiff, its OK to reduce your activity. As soon as you are able, though, resume gentle stretching and movement.
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