Simple Lifestyle Changes to Prevent Joint Pain
Joint pain can take over your ability to function regularly as you grow older. All of a sudden, simple tasks seem Herculean. Getting up from a chair, walking down a flight of stairs, and standing for long hours can all trigger knee pain, hip pain, etc.
Lifting even slightly heavy weights can set off shoulder and elbow pain. Basically, every regular activity can come to a standstill, making life a struggle.
But all is not lost since prevention and cure exist for almost all kinds of health conditions nowadays. Some simple lifestyle changes can prevent disabling situations from ever arising in your life. Here are some changes you can make in your habits so as to keep joint pain at bay:
Keeping your body in motion reduces the stiffness in your muscles and joints. So take some time off from whatever you might be doing, especially if it is an activity that requires you to sit still for a long time, and try to change positions or take small walks.
- Lose weight
You don’t necessarily need to be overweight to get joint pain, but excess weight can be a strain on your knees, hips, and back. Consult a doctor, and try to shed a little weight, so you can take some pressure off those joints and hence slow down wear and tear.
- Eat healthy
Foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids (such as fish, soybeans, walnuts, etc.) help reduce inflammation in the joints, thereby decreasing pain and stiffness. Also, eat a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables, which contain antioxidants that repair damage and slow down the effects of ageing. Avoid processed food, added sugars, and trans-fats, as they cause weight gain.
- Avoid smoking and drinking
The Arthritis Foundation warns against smoking and drinking. Alcohol reacts with certain types of pain medication, while smoking hinders the body’s natural healing and reduces blood flow, all of which makes it difficult to cure injuries and inflammation. The coughing that accompanies smoking can also trigger some kinds of joint pain in the back and neck. Quitting smoking can prevent the aggravation of arthritis symptoms throughout the body, besides improving your overall health.
- Reduce stress
The body’s immune system is negatively affected by stress. It also releases chemicals that cause inflammation. Thus, with higher levels of stress, your arthritic pain may get aggravated. Practise relaxation techniques such as meditation, yoga, etc., which are said to help with joint pain.
It may seem unbelievable that the ultimate solution to every problem is exercise, but to its credit, exercise does come with a whole range of health benefits. Preventing the onset of joint pain is one of them. Not only does it keep your body in motion and your muscles and joints healthy, but also reduces stress and helps you relax, both of which are essential to avoid body pain.
These look like big sacrifices to make, but the result is worth it. Joint pain is excruciatingly taxing on the body as well as the mind. If all it takes to prevent it are these few, simple lifestyle changes, then it’s not a very high price to pay.
If the joint pain needs medical attention, you must visit a doctor straight away. In Toronto, Canada, you will get the best musculoskeletal care from an experienced team of orthopedic surgeons, physiotherapists, massage therapists, naturopaths, osteopaths, etc., at Don Valley Health and Wellness Centre. You can book an appointment here.