If you’re dealing with pain from arthritis, you’re not alone. 23% of American adults live with arthritis (over 54 million people), but it doesn’t have to keep you from doing the things you love. There are plenty of ways to manage your arthritis so that you can stay active and not miss out on what brings you joy!
- First and foremost, stay on track with any medications your doctor has prescribed. Over-the-counter pain medications and prescriptions should keep your swelling at a manageable level and make arthritis less painful to deal with.
- Take measures to keep your weight in check. Extra weight adds extra stress to your joints, increasing swelling and pain from arthritis. Try a manageable exercise routine in combination with a healthy diet. Check out Harvard’s list of foods that cause inflammation and foods that naturally reduce inflammation.
- Actively protect painful joints. This could mean giving painful joints a break each day and also using aids like braces or canes to reduce the amount of pressure your joints are subjected to.
- Take courses to educate yourself on healthy habits and ways to cope with arthritis. The CDC has this list of programs that can help those dealing with arthritis learn healthier and more comfortable habits and techniques.
- Use your strength. If your knees give you trouble getting when you get up from your seat, push up with your arms to relieve some pressure. The same goes with painful hands and wrists, you can do the heavier lifting of opening a door with your elbows.
- Think ahead about your activities. For example, keeping shelves, closets, and drawers organized will reduce the amount of time you spend searching for things. Also, you can buy grab bars for your bathroom, or grabbing tools to help you pick up things from the ground without bending over.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Of course, you want autonomy in your life. We’re not saying you need around-the-clock aid, but if you’re simply refusing all help as a matter of pride, you’ll pay the price in pain. Let your friends and loved ones help you out, it will make you feel more comfortable and can strengthen the bond between you and them.
Arthritis doesn’t have to rule your life. Use these tips to make a noticeable impact on your pain level and start reaping the rewards of managing your arthritis! As always, if you ever need any more tips or other kinds of help, we’re just a click away. Use the ‘Talk to Us’ button in the top right corner of this page to get in touch with us!