Osteoarthritis, commonly known as arthritis, is one of the most common chronic health problems affecting older adults across the globe. Symptoms of musculoskeletal arthritis disease include pain and stiffness in joints, which can impair mobility and make performing simple tasks extremely challenging. Managing pain and inflammation can be difficult and time-consuming for aging adults with arthritis pain, requiring constant vigilance and persistence to keep symptoms at bay. Fortunately, however, there are plenty of ways to manage pain and ensure your quality of life remains optimal during this challenging time of your life. Read on to find out what they are!
Do Gentle Exercises
A proper exercise routine is essential in arthritis management. When done regularly, it can make a big difference in managing your pain and help with flexibility and endurance, which are very important when managing your overall health with arthritis. Do gentle exercises that can include water aerobics, tai chi or just swimming at least thrice per week if you want to get rid of joint pain caused by arthritis.
Often when you are in pain, you are so preoccupied with managing your symptoms that it’s easy to forget to drink enough water. But staying hydrated is essential for keeping joints lubricated and moving properly without creating inflammation or pain. Remember, you need six to eight glasses of water a day, even more, if it’s hot outside or if you exercise often. And most people don’t get close to that amount each day.
Follow a Healthy Diet
Diet, nutrition, and obesity are essential factors in OA management. Patients should be referred to a nutritionist who can provide individualized dietary recommendations based on their specific conditions. Consuming healthy foods, such as fruits and vegetables, rich in vitamins C and E; anti-inflammatory ingredients like ginger; glucosamine; chondroitin; Omega-3s from fish oil will help reduce pain by lowering inflammation. Diet plays an essential role in maintaining a healthy weight, which is crucial to ease the stress on painful joints during everyday tasks of daily living.
Try Heat Therapy
There are a few different ways to use heat therapy to relieve arthritis pain in aging adults. Try a hot shower or bath, a heating pad, or a hot water bottle. Although these options may seem simple, they can be incredibly effective in easing arthritis pain in seniors. Also, consider soaking your feet in warm water and Epsom salts, which are both soothing and anti-inflammatory. Heat therapy can be beneficial when paired with topical analgesics, such as menthol creams or eucalyptus oils. For relief from joint pain at night, try alternating between warm and cold therapy to ensure you get continuous relief through your sleep cycle without excessive inflammation from staying on one temperature all night long.
Avoid Being Stressed
Stress can aggravate arthritis pain, so focus on balancing your life by finding a healthy work-life balance. If your current job is stressful, don’t be afraid to ask if there are opportunities to help manage or change that stress. It may mean going into a different field—or it might simply be a matter of taking a break from specific tasks. And if you can’t avoid stress at work? Try to find ways to relax outside of work, such as through exercise and meditation. Whatever you do, make sure it helps you destress from all that tension in your body.