How To Handle An Arthritis Flare
Working with your doctor is important when you have an arthritis flare. In some cases, they may recommend a short-term course of steroid medication to relieve the inflammation and pain. If symptoms persist for weeks or months, you and your doctor may need to discuss a change in your treatment plan.
But its also important to find ways to cope on your own. We asked community members on , , and how they handle arthritis flares. Here is some of their advice.
Stop Thinking You Can’t Exercise
Many people who have arthritis are afraid if they’re active they’ll have more pain and so they just don’t get any exercise. This may be one of the biggest misconceptions about arthritis.
At the same time, it’s an ironic idea because inactivity actually makes pain and disability from arthritis worse over time, while regular exercise keeps joints moving and prevents stiffness, strengthens the muscles around the joints, and improves mobility.
So if you’ve been sedentary out of fear you’ll make your arthritis worse, talk to your healthcare provider to make sure it’s OK to exercise. Then start slowly with gentle, joint-friendly movements. It’s fine to respect your arthritis pain, but you don’t have to let it stop you.
Exercise : Finger Spread
Osteoarthritis can make it hard to open and close your hands, but this stretch can help maintain your flexibility.
Step 1: Hold one hand up in front of you, palm facing you. Spread fingers as far apart as you can.
Step 2: Close your hand to make a fist and hold for a few seconds. Repeat with the opposite hand.
Treat Infections And Maintain Proper Hygiene
Septic arthritis occurs when infections spread through your bloodstream to your joints. It can also be a complication of joint surgery for arthritis.
Additionally, research suggests that severe gum disease and other infections may be linked to rheumatoid arthritis or even trigger its development. However, according to a 2020 review, evidence is limited and further research is necessary to confirm these effects.
Practicing good oral hygiene and treating infections may help protect you from septic arthritis and improve your overall health.
Seek prompt treatment for an infection, such as a skin infection or urinary tract infection. Contact your doctor immediately if you suspect an infection and experience swelling, warmth, or discoloration of the skin.
Diet Exercise Can Help Ward Off Arthritis
As baby boomers get older and fatter, theyre also more likely to come down with one of the consequences of age and weight arthritis.
Although they cant prevent aging, boomers can reduce the risk from obesity, and diet and exercise can help them achieve it, doctors say.
Osteoarthritis, the most common form, develops as cartilage that cushions the joints wears away, leaving the ends of the bones rubbing against each other. The Arthritis Foundation says X-rays can find signs of osteoarthritis in most people over 60.
The condition commonly begins to show up between ages 40 and 60, so most boomers are right smack in the target, said Bill Roberts, an associate professor of family medicine at the University of Minnesota and president-elect of the American College of Sports Medicine.
Extra weight on the cartilage brings extra risk of the joint disease. The simple explanation is, youre putting more biomechanical stress on the joints, said Kevin Fontaine, an assistant professor of rheumatology at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.
Joint pain increases with weightFontaine and his colleagues looked at survey data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and concluded that the odds of joint pain went up as weight did. People ages 60 and older had a 12 percent likelihood of pain if they were underweight but a 60 percent chance if they were very obese, according to the study in the October edition of the journal Obesity Research.
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Ways To Manage Arthritis
There are a lot of things you can do to manage your arthritis. The day-to-day things you choose to do to manage your condition and stay healthy are self-management strategies and activities. CDCs Arthritis Program recognizes five self-management strategies for managing arthritis and its symptoms.
Practice these simplestrategies to reduce symptoms and get relief soyou can pursue the activities that are important to you. These strategies can even help you manage other chronic conditions you may have, such as diabetes, heart disease, or obesity.
Use these 5 strategies to manage your arthritis at any age.
Join a self-management education workshop, which can help you learn the skills to manage your arthritis and make good decisions about your health.
How can a self-management education workshop help me?
Learning strategies to better manage your arthritis can help you:
- Feel more in control of your health.
- Manage pain and other symptoms.
- Plan and carry out valuedactivities, like working and spending time with loved ones.
- Improve your mood.
- Communicate better with your health care provider about your care.
Learn about CDC-recognized self-management education programs that improve the quality of life of people with arthritis.
Stay as active as your health allows. Some physical activity is better than none.
Unsure about what kind of activity is safe?
The focus of arthritis treatment is to
Ways To Ward Off Knee Arthritis
Osteoarthritis is one of those conditions that, if you live long enough, you’ll likely develop to some degree. Occurring when the joint cartilage breaks down, it results from wear and tear and usually hits during middle age or afterward. The knees are particularly vulnerable to osteoarthritis because they bear so much of your body weight. In fact, researchers say that almost half of all people will develop osteoarthritis of the knee by age 85. But there are ways you can prevent or at least slow the progression of any osteoarthritis that may be developing. To keep your knees in good shape as long as possible, consider these tips:
- Lose extra weight. This is one of experts’ top recommendations for protecting your knees from osteoarthritis. Being overweight or obese puts tremendous pressure on your knees. According to Johns Hopkins University, knee osteoarthritis is four to five times more common in obese people than people of normal weight. The good news? A study of overweight women with osteoarthritis showed that a loss of just 11 pounds reduced their risk of knee osteoarthritis by 50 percent.
- Pay attention to posture. Poor posture can put extra strain on your joints, which can lead to the development of osteoarthritis.
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How To Preventrheumatoid Arthritis
Here some of the following point to reduce rheumatoid arthritis cause:
- Following a healthy lifestyle and daily physical exercise.
- Try to add more nutrition-based calories in your diet to get complete nutrition.
- Add some restriction to your daily habits like do eating junk or processed food when you hungry or feeling munchy.
- You can add some of the healthy munchy foods to get rid of hunger during evening time or after a few hours of having lunch.
- Go for a morning walk or running it helps to keep your blood circulation t its best.
- You have any sort of pain in your body consult your doctor and then do exercises suggested by your doctor.
- Fix the timing of your meal, it is important to consume on time, off timing also has a bad effect on our health.
- Avoid deep-fried food, packaged food or fast foods.
- Try to add foods which keep your gut healthy because a healthy gut is a way to a healthy body and mind.
- So, try to add food products which help to keep your gut healthy like curd, papaya, lemon, Ash gourd, honey, almonds, sprouts, bananas, garlic, ginger, leafy green veggies and many more.
- Breastfeeding of small babies for a minimum of six months helps to develop healthy gut from the very beginning. This is important because babies microbiota start to develop during their birth only.
Microbial islike the father of all types of microbes, which lives inside and outside ahuman body like protozoa, viruses, bacteria and fungi.
Ways To Prevent Arthritis
- Keep a healthy weight – Being overweight or obese increases the risk of developing arthritis. Good nutrition can help with weight control, which reduces the risk of developing arthritis. For people with arthritis, keeping a healthy weight can help manage arthritis symptoms and prevent progression of the disease.
- Protect your joints – Joint injury or overuse can lead to osteoarthritis. Preventing overuse of joints and protecting joints reduce the risk of developing arthritis.
- Stay Active – Regular physical activity can help prevent some forms of arthritis. For people with arthritis, low-impact activities, performed at a moderate pace, such as swimming, walking, and riding a bike, can reduce arthritis pain and delay disability. Everyday activities, such as gardening, are also helpful in managing arthritis.
- Sign Up for a Life Improvement Program class – Attending an exercise or self-management class or workshop can help you to become more physically active and make other healthy lifestyle changes that can improve your health. Find out more about Life Improvement Programs .
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/7follow A Healthy And Balanced Diet
Control the calories in your diet to maintain a healthy body weight. Add foods like ginger, garlic, fish, nuts, berries, colourful fruits, and leafy vegetables to your diet as they are helpful against arthritis as they have an anti-inflammatory effect. Avoid excessive salt, sugar, processed and refined foods, and saturated fats, which can increase inflammation in the body. Keep your blood sugar in check because Diabetes increases the risk of osteoarthritis. Well-controlled blood sugar levels can prevent the development and progression of arthritis.
Manage Blood Sugar Levels
Arthritis may be related to diabetes, which is caused by chronic high blood sugar levels. CDC data from 20132015 suggests that 47% of adults with diabetes in the United States also experience arthritis.
Contact your doctor if you are concerned about your blood sugar levels. They may suggest management methods such as:
Learn more about high blood sugar symptoms, causes, and treatments.
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Add To The Load Slowly
Even if youre diligent about strengthening and stretching, you can still trigger pain or cause damage if you jump into a new shoulder-straining activity or return to one too quickly. Some people think, Oh, I played back in high school, I can pick up a ball and throw like I used to, Dr. Lansdown said. Your muscles and tendons need time to build the specific strength and control required for any shoulder-straining movement.
Even athletes in their prime risk injuries like this. In a small study of collegiate swimmers published in May, two-thirds of the athletes who suffered injuries during the season did so during an intense, midseason training trip, when some nearly doubled their typical weekly swimming distance.
To keep an eye on how much youre stressing your shoulders, consider what scientists call the acute-to-chronic workload ratio, said Travis Pollen, assistant professor of exercise science at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, lead author of the swimming study and a former Paralympic trials swimmer.
Tally the average weekly amount of a given activity say, laps of swimming or hours of tennis youve logged over the last four weeks. Thats your chronic workload. Divide that by what youre doing this week, the acute workload. Some estimates suggest when this number rises higher than 1.5 meaning youve done 50 percent more this week compared to your average for the previous month your odds of injury increase soon after.
More Tips For Your Hands
Moving your hands and fingers can help keep your ligaments and tendons flexible and increase the function of synovial fluid. Try regular hand exercises to strengthen muscles and relieve stiffness and pain. Simple exercises like flexing and bending, finger touching, and finger sliding may help keep your fingers limber.
Staying physically active while at the same time taking extra precautions against injury is vital not only for preventing arthritis, but also for your overall physical health.
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How Is Arthritis Treated
For many types of arthritis, there are treatments available that can help control symptoms and prevent damage to the joints.
The most appropriate treatment will depend on which type of arthritis you have, which joints are affected, and the symptoms you have.
Treatment might include:
- medicines, such as painkillers, anti-inflammatory medicines or medicines to slow down the disease
- pain management techniques, such as meditation
In severe cases, surgery may be needed to replace or repair damaged joints.
Protect Against Sports Injuries
Although sports injuries are accidental, warming up before playing and wearing proper safety equipment – such as supportive footwear and knee pads – could help prevent arthritis caused by joint damage. One of the main causes of OA in people under 50 years is prior sports joint injuries such as ACL and meniscus tears in the knee6.
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Test Your Mobility First
Before you attempt an overhead sport or weight lifting move or as a general gauge of how well your shoulder is functioning try a simple three-part test for shoulder mobility, Dr. Michener said.
First, stand in front of a wall with your toes touching it and see if you can raise one arm at a time over your head to touch the wall in front of you, with your palm flat. Then, bring your hand down to touch the back of your head, keeping your elbow out to the side. Third, bring your arm back down to your side, then reach up behind your back, aiming to touch the opposite shoulder blade with the back of your hand. Repeat with your other hand.
If you have trouble doing these movements or reaching the end positions, you could benefit from more mobility, Dr. Michener said.
To improve your range of motion, perform those same until you feel a stretch, then hold it for 30 seconds to a minute. Do this three to five times, twice a week. Then, monitor your progress if your mobility doesnt improve, you might need to hold your stretches longer or repeat them more frequently, Dr. Michener said. After a couple of weeks, if your mobility is still limited or you have pain while you stretch, see a physical therapist or other medical professional.
Further Information Help And Support
Versus Arthritis provides help and support for people in the UK with arthritis, plus their families and friends.
They have a free helpline you can call for further information and support on 0800 5200 520, Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm. The helpline is closed from 12pm on the last Friday of every month for training.
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Tips To Keep Your Hands Healthy
More on health
What Can You Do To Prevent Arthritis
Arthritis is one of the leading causes of disability in the United States, according to the Arthritis Foundation. Some 23% of all adults in the U.S., more than 54 million people, have arthritis. The annual direct medical costs are at least $140 billion. The disease affects senior citizens, working-age adults and even children, with 300,000 children under the age of 18 diagnosed with the condition.
The pain from arthritis can make simple daily tasks, such as walking and opening doors, seem nearly impossible. It can also limit the type of job tasks working-age patients with arthritis can perform. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says 8 million working-age adults report their arthritis limits their ability to work.
Fortunately, there are things you can do to try to prevent the pain and limited range of motion arthritis can cause.
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What Are The Treatment Options For Arthritis
Unfortunately, there is still no cure for arthritis, but your doctor may offer treatment options and lifestyle changes that can help relieve your symptoms, keep them from getting worse and prevent further complications. Your doctor may also recommend strategies for arthritis pain management at home. These may include the following:
- Preventing joint injuries
/7maintain Healthy Body Weight
The extra kilos can cause the joints to wear out faster by placing an additional physical load on them. Every extra kilo of body weight puts an extra load of four to six kilos on the knee joint, depending on the activity involved. Furthermore, the excess fat tissue also causes joint damage by secreting specific chemicals which destroy the cartilage. A healthy body weight is one where the body mass index is between 18.5 and 24.9.
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