Arthrosis can limit your mobility and reduce quality of life significantly. Even if you have been diagnosed with arthrosis – be it a knee, a hip or some other joint affected – you can follow advice, which can help you alleviate symptoms and reduce pain associated with cartilage deterioration. Here are 7 tips for patients suffering from arthrosis.
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Since it is putting a lot of stress on joints that is the major contributor to arthrosis development, keeping joints safe and maintaining physical activity of an appropriate intensity are the cornerstones of symptom handling basics.
#1. Mind your nutrition
Exercising is not the only thing that affects joints, and what we eat is just as an important factor as sports are. One of the reasons nutrition matters is that consumption of unhealthy foods and alcohol affects the cartilage, which exacerbates symptoms. Besides, poor eating patterns can result in obesity, which means your joints will suffer more, as they will have to carry extra weight. Stick to a healthy diet rich in veggies, whole grains, and fruits, and drink enough water. By the way, smoking can also harm your joints, so quitting the habit is likely to bring you a lot of benefits.
#2. Don’t skip training sessions
That’s right – being diagnosed with arthrosis does not mean you should avoid moving. On the contrary, exercising of moderate intensity can be beneficial–and not only for your joints–so doing sports several times a week can help you slow down degenerative processes in the cartilage.
It is important to choose a kind of sports that does not put you at risk of cracks and strains, like tennis and football do, so swimming or cycling could be the best options. If you don’t like these sports, you can opt for Nordic walking, which is easiest and does not require any gym membership cards or huge investments.
#3. Stop carrying heavy things
It’s not the piano that this advice is limited to – we tend to carry heavy weights often, even if we are unaware of it. Groceries, suitcases, your Mastiff – your daily routine harbors a lot of things that are too heavy for your affected joints, so reducing stress is a must.
#4. Use higher chairs and beds
Standing up can be a challenge if you have arthrosis, as it brings pain due to the stress on the joints. To reduce it, use cushions while sitting on chairs and higher mattresses to avoid extra strain on your knees. The higher the surface you are sitting on, the better.
#5. Avoid kneeling down when doing housework
Gardening, building, fixing appliances, and other things which may be part of your daily routine can be dangerous to your affected knees, so use tools that enable you to stand while weeding. Use special knee pads, if kneeling cannot be avoided.
#6. Do your best not to walk on uneven surfaces
If you are a keen trail runner, you may find this advice a bitter pill to swallow. When you walk on an uneven surface, your joints are affected by it more than by walking on a flat surface. Roads and parks are better for patients with arthrosis than mountains and hills.
#7. Wear appropriate shoes
Hard heels may turn out to be a poor choice, as wearing such shoes can exacerbate arthrosis symptoms and promote further cartilage destruction. Soft heels are a much better option. Conversely, shoes that do not provide a good grip are not beneficial in those suffering from the disease.
If you are interested in more information about arthrosis and ways to treat it, take a look at the brochure created by specialists from medi.de (the website is in German, but don’t let it deter you – the brochure is in English).
Should you notice it has become painful to stand up, or you feel pain in the joints in some other situations, don’t hesitate to consult a doctor, as it will be easier to treat the disease if it has not progressed much yet. A stitch in time saves nine, and a healthy lifestyle with moderate exercising is what is usually recommended at this stage of arthrosis development.