When you think about arthritis, you probably think of elderly people with warped hands who move slowly and painfully around. If you’re still young, you might believe that you’ll never get arthritis, but the truth is that arthritis can happen to anyone, especially women, those who are overweight or obese, and those who have the genetic disposition to arthritis.
Since arthritis is an umbrella term that covers over 100 conditions, diseases, and disorders, there isn’t a simple answer or way you can control or prevent it, but there are some guiding principles that you can follow in the meantime. Read up on our 7 tips that may help you prevent or manage arthritis!
Get Educated – Learning everything you can about the form of arthritis you have will help manage your symptoms, and taking in as much knowledge as possible about arthritis in general can help you to prevent or slow the progression of the disease. You can find a slew of information online, so start researching or learn more from your doctor.
Eat More Fish – Certain types of fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acid, a healthy polyunsaturated fat that gives the consumer a number of health benefits. These fats may help reduce inflammation in the body. A recent study in Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases found that women who eat fish regularly may be at lower risk for rheumatoid arthritis. To help ward off arthritis, partake of fish high in omega-3s such as trout, salmon, mackerel, or sardines twice a week.
Be Physically Active – Exercising doesn’t just take the stress of your weight off your joints – it also strengthens the muscles around your joints, protecting them from wear and tear. Start your own routine or join a fitness program to get started! For the maximum benefit, alternate aerobic activities such as walking or swimming with strengthening exercises to maintain your flexibility and range of motion.
Take Control of Your Weight – Remember, your knees have to support all of your body weight, and being overweight or obese really takes a big toll on them. Do your knees a favor and work on controlling your weight if you’re overweight or obese. Diet and exercise can help you bring your weight down into a healthy range. Even if you lose 10 pounds, you will decrease the force on your knees by 30 to 60 pounds.
Avoid Injuries – Accidents happen; they’re a part of life. However, you should do all that you can to avoid injury, especially because the joints can start to wear out over time. When you injure a joint in sports or in an accident, you can damage the cartilage in and around your joints, causing them to wear out more quickly. Avoid injury by using the proper safety equipment when you play sports and by learning the proper techniques to exercise.
Protect Your Joints – Whether you’re out working in the yard, exercising, or moving at work, it’s always wise to use the right techniques to help you protect your hard-working joints. For instance, you should lift with your knees and hips instead of your back when you pick up objects. Carry items close to your body to reduce the strain that your wrists experience. If you have a desk job, make sure that your back, legs, and arms are all well-supported.
Visit Your Doctor – If you happen to begin developing arthritis, don’t hesitate in seeing your doctor. Arthritis is a progressive condition, so the longer you wait to see a doctor for treatment, the more destruction will happen to your joints. Your doctor can suggest treatments or lifestyle changes to help slow down the progress of your arthritis and preserve your mobility, so be sure to schedule an appointment as soon as you can.
Arthritis can’t always be prevented; some causes including increasing age, family history, and sex are out of your control, but a few changes in your health habits can help reduce your risk of developing arthritis. If you have a suspicion that you have a form of arthritis, visit your doctor or schedule an appointment online with us here at Labtest Diagnostics! We can provide the right tests for you to take, even without a doctor’s notice. Visit us online at www.dlabtest.com for more information!