Exercises for People with Arthritis
Exercises for people with arthritis can help to ease pain and increase mobility. For many people, especially those of us getting on in years, arthritis is a debilitating illness. Arthritis causes increased inflammation around the joints that can lead to immobility and pain.
While there are conventional medical treatments that are available for people with arthritis, many wonder what can be done naturally to help improve the pain and mobility. In fact, there are many natural methods to help manage pain and improve mobility.
This article will show you five different alternative therapies and treatments that can help you manage your daily arthritis symptoms and mobility issues.
Web M.D. recommends hydrotherapy as a form of exercise for those with arthritis. Hydrotherapy is similar to exercise in a pool, however, the pool tends to be warmer than a traditional swimming pool (just the way I like it). With hydrotherapy, participants can get all of the benefits of regular exercise without any of the impact on joints.
Having an option for exercise that has zero impact on the joints is a godsend, and can increase mobility as well as range of motion. Many times hydrotherapy is considered a form of physical therapy and may be covered by insurance.
Range of Motion Exercise
Many sufferers of arthritis keep the affected joints in a tightened position to alleviate pain. Unfortunately, this has the unintended side effect of increasing pain because it shortens ligaments and muscles around the affected joint. This means that instead of decreasing pain over the long-term keeping the joints in a tightened position will increase pain.
The Cleveland Clinic recommends all arthritis sufferers participate in range of motion exercises. The range of motion exercises typically includes stretching and extending the joints to their full ability. Some range of motion programs may include yoga or tai chi. Loosen up! OK?
Because arthritis causes pain and immobility, many sufferers of arthritis have excess weight. The excess weight increases pressure and damage on the joints. The increased pressure and damage on the joints increases pain which causes decreased mobility. It becomes a never- ending cycle of increased pain and decreased mobility. I know, I know!
Mayo Clinic recommends that if you have arthritis, you maintain a healthy body weight. If you’re currently overweight and have a difficult time moving, a healthy body weight can be maintained through proper diet. This is achievable. Believe and achieve! OK?
Exercises for people with arthritis includes maintaining a healthy weight. A meeting with a dietitian can help you start a healthy diet if you are not sure where to begin. The dietitian or nutritionist may also have ideas on foods that can help decrease inflammation in the body and reduce pain from your arthritis.
Hot and Cold Therapy
One of the benefits of hot and cold therapy is that it can be done at home. The second benefit of hot and cold therapy is that it is very inexpensive. Heating pads and ice packs are usually on hand and if not, they don’t cost a lot of money. Healthline suggests that arthritis sufferers try alternating hot and cold therapy to affected joints to decrease pain.
You may find that some days cold therapy works the best on your arthritic joints while other days a heating pad may be better. Having both on hand to use is going to be the best way to ensure that this therapy is effective at increasing your mobility and decreasing your pain.
The arthritis foundation notes that one of the most beneficial treatments for mobility in arthritis patients is massage. Massage can help increase range of motion simply by relieving tension on stiff muscles and ligaments that surround the arthritic joints.
The arthritis foundation says that the best types of massage for people with arthritis are either deep tissue massage or Swedish massage. If you are having a high amount of pain deep tissue massage may be difficult to tolerate because of how deep into the muscle massage therapist will go. Either way, massage therapy is an easily accessible treatment to help increase your range of motion when you have arthritis.
While arthritis will not go away no matter how well you take care of your body, doing these exercises for people with arthritis can help you manage your symptoms and stop the progression of the disease. If you need to, you can combine medication with these holistic approaches to treatment. Practicing these tips will help you toward pain-relief and better mobility! Here is a link to the Arthritis Foundation, where you can find local offices and resources! Reach out for the help you need, join a group of others who can relate – it really does help), and…..