Osteoarthritis commonly occurs with age, due to overuse of the joints.
According to the Arthritis Foundation, approximately 27 million adults in the U.S. live with osteoarthritis. And while OA can develop at any age, it is most common in people aged 65 and older. This is because risk increases with age, as you overuse your joints and your thigh muscles become weaker.
Also known as degenerative joint disease or degenerative arthritis, OA affects joints in the body such as the knees, hips, lower back, neck and other smaller joints. It occurs when the cartilage that covers the ends of your bones wears down, causing pain and issues when moving your joints. Overtime, bone rubbing against bone could lead to extreme pain and joint damage.
This month, take a moment to consider your current knee, hip and joint pain. Are you living with osteoarthritis? Are you looking for a way to combat the harsh feelings? Here are a few recommendations for managing your osteoarthritis pain:
If you're looking for fast-working option for pain relief, painkillers work well, according to Arthritis Research UK. It's suggested to take these before the pain reaches its worst point and it's very important to be mindful about how often you take them – your doctor will recommend your daily dosage, so make sure to respect it. Over the counter anti-inflammatory drugs can help, too, which can be obtained right from the local pharmacy or supermarket - just make sure to consult with your doctor before taking a medication.
Getting physically active might be the last idea in your head to relieve the pain, but it's actually an effective remedy. Don't get ahead of yourself, just start slow. Simple exercises can promote strength, remove stiffness from your joints and improve your range of motion. Strength training exercises, aerobics and water aerobics are great for your joints. If you're unsure of how to get started, meet with your doctor and ask for advice. He or she will be able to recommend a variety of exercises that can fit your specific needs for pain relief.
A study led by Heather K. Vincent at the University of Florida found that the reduction of body fat can reduce the stressors that go into joint degeneration. Because excess weight puts a strain on your body and joints, your chances for experiencing osteoarthritis are increased. To lose weight successfully, just consider your current lifestyle habits – exercising contributes to weight loss, but it can't be achieved if you don't eat a well-balanced, nutritious diet. Stay away from refined sugars, fatty meats and processed foods and stick to a diet that's full of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean meats.
If the pain has reached an unbearable point, your doctor may recommend hip/knee replacement or surgery. The goal is to make it so that your pain subsides completely. The knee is the most commonly replaced joint, and the hip comes in a close second, and millions of Americans have seen improved mobility and independence as a result of these surgeries. If you've noticed your joint pain has rapidly increased, it might be worth explaining to your doctor to see if you're a good candidate for surgery or replacement.
Source: Sunrise Senior Living