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Ways to Treat and Prevent Arthritis
Arthritis is basically a packaging problem. Your joints, remarkable and elaborate hinges, are cushioned by cartilage. They are held together with various other tissues, including muscles and tendons. Lubrication is in the form of some oily goop called synovial fluid, which is released by the synovial lining of the joints. If you have osteoarthritis, the kind that most frequently coincides with aging, the cartilage around the joints starts to thin down or disappear. That is not your fault. What's more, it is not always preventable, either. The runner-up, rheumatoid arthritis, is far less common, more mysterious, and equally pain producing. Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory disease. Therefore, here are some ways that you can use to prevent such disease.
1. Move These Joints
To keep the pain of arthritis from getting an even tighter grip on you, get yourself on an exercise program. If you are over 60, start with low-impact aerobic activities such as 20-minute walks or exercises in a swimming pool at least three or four times per week. Any aerobic exercise program should be matched to your physical capacity. If a person has been inactive for a period of time, then start with something like a five-minute walk a couple of times per week, and then slowly start to increase your distance as you feel more comfortable.
2. Pepper Yourself
You may not like hot peppers on your sandwich, but you might like hot-pepper cream for arthritis relief. Capsaicin cream, made from the active ingredient in hot peppers, has been shown in studies to ease arthritis pain when used regularly. You can buy this cream over the counter. Follow instructions on the label, wash your hands thoroughly after application, and keep this stuff away from your eyes and other mucous membranes. It can really burn.
3. Ease The Burden
Arthritis gets worse more rapidly in overweight individuals. If you lose 5 to 10 pounds, it considerably lightens the load on all of your weight-bearing joints — hips, knees, ankles, and feet.
4. Vary Your Terrain
Walking is always recommended but it is important to not get into a rut. If you walk the same exact path every day, then you are landing on the same part of your foot each and every day and you are putting stress on your knees and hips the exact same way every day. For the sake of interest as well as exercise, seek out new terrain like hills, fields, and pathways as well as flat road or sidewalk.
5. Ask For Alternative Oils
If you are not a fish-eater, you should pay a visit to the nearest health food store. Look for either evening primrose oil, flaxseed oil, or fish oil. All contain the same omega-3 fatty acids found in cold-water fish. If you take one teaspoon of any of these each day, it may lightly ease some of the inflammatory aspects of arthritis. If you decide to take capsules, follow the manufacturer's instructions on the label.
6. Try A Cold Pack
If you have swelling, especially after any physical activity, put some ice with a thin towel wrapped around it on the area around the affected joint. Ice the area for 15 to 20 minutes after exercise to reduce the discomfort and also minimize the amount of swelling.
7. Give Yourself A Hot Wax
A hot-wax treatment can provide soothing relief if your hands are aching from arthritis. The treatment is available at many hospitals, but it is less expensive to treat yourself at home. A professional therapist should instruct on its appropriate use before you try this at home. For a hot-wax treatment kit, call an orthopedic supply store to check availability. Heat the wax in the heating unit, apply it to your hands, and wrap them in plastic gloves for 10 minutes. You should feel some relief. The beauty of the at-home hot-wax treatment is that the wax can be reused for several weeks. Just be careful when you are using it around children.
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