Published in The Indianapolis Star are some tips for easing arthritis pain suggested by Dr. John Hur, Methodist Sports Medicine/Orthopedic Specialists:
The more you weigh, the more stress you put on joints, especially hips and knees. Excess weight can mean more pain, no matter how severe your arthritis may be.
My personal note: This is exactly what my nurse friend told me. Because when I dropped too many pounds, I was kind-a worried. But then it turned out that my arthritis pain was lessen when I lost significant weight.
Get moving Exercise
Protects joints by strengthening and stretching muscles around them. Strong muscles help stabilize joints, and reducing stiffness can help reduce pain. But to reduce injury risk, start new activities slowly until it’s clear how your body will react.
My personal note: I am a bit problematic in this area. Like this afternoon, I walked a few blocks (slow pace, not hurried walking). After which my leg muscles feel like cramping. On days that I am immobile, my muscles are often not strong enough to support my stiff knees. I may have to work harder onstrengthening and stretching my muscles withour straining myself.
Use the big joints
When lifting or carrying, use the largest and strongest joints and muscles by holding large items close to your body, forcing yourself to use your arms instead of your hands. This helps avoid injury and strain on smaller joints.
My personal note: I’ve given up on carrying anything at all. Even grocery bags! That may even be bad. But I guess at some point I have to do all the carrying myself. Sometimes it is difficult becoming dependent on somebody all the time.
Get in tune with your body
If you’re in pain, don’t ignore it. Pain after activity or exercise can indicate overstressed joints. If you have more arthritis pain two hours after exercise than before, consider cutting back on your exercise routine or eliminating certain exercises the next time.
My personal note: No problem in this department. I never ignored any pain. The only other problem I can see is finding the balance. Right exercise that won’t strain too much and sticking to it. Because of the pain, most arthritis patients feeling pain may not do any exercise at all. Exercising in water is my solution to this. Hit the beach! Or go regularly to your country club’s swimming pool if you do not have a pool at home.