Arthritis is a common joint issue that worsens with advanced age. Read on to learn more about how to prevent it.
In this article
What Is Arthritis?
Arthritis is the swelling and tenderness of one or more joints due to joining inflammation and/or disease. Arthritis can be seen in all joints in your body such as;
There are various types of arthritis, but the most common ones are osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and psoriatic arthritis.
- Reduced range of motion,
Some risk factors may affect the possibility of developing arthritis.
Family history. If your family members have arthritis, you may be more likely to suffer from it. Some types of arthritis run in the families, so your genes make you more sensitive to the environmental factors that trigger arthritis.
Gender. Women are more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis than men, while men are more likely to suffer from gout or other types.
Obesity. People who are overweight have more risk of suffering from arthritis due to the excessive weight on joints.
Age. The risk of developing arthritis increases with age.
Joint Injury. If you’ve injured a joint before, your risk of suffering from arthritis may be higher.
There are different types of treatments for arthritis such as;
Painkillers are used to reduce the pain but do not reduce inflammation.
NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory) drugs are used to reduce both inflammation and pain. NSAIDs have different kinds that can be bought over the counter, but some need to be prescribed. You can also find NSAIDs in gel or cream form.
DMARDs (disease-modifying antirheumatic) drugs are generally used to treat rheumatoid arthritis by slowing down or stopping the immune system so the blood cells cannot attack the joints.
How To Prevent It?
It’s not always possible to prevent arthritis because your family health history and aging are out of your control. Some healthy habits can help you reduce your risk of developing joint problems.
Omega 3-Fatty Acids
Omega 3-fatty acids are highly beneficial for reducing inflammation in the body, and according to a study, women who eat fish regularly can have a lower risk of rheumatoid arthritis.
Adding fish that is rich in omega 3-fatty acids such as; salmon, mackerel, trout, and sardines in your diet can reduce your risk of developing arthritis.
Healthy Body Weight
Joints in knees and ankles support your body weight. If you put too much weight on them, it’s very likely to suffer from joint diseases. Overweight women are reported to be four times more likely to get knee osteoarthritis than those who obtain healthy body weight.
Exercising can help you maintain healthy body weight and strengthen the muscles around the joints. Doing aerobics, swimming, stretching, walking, etc. can help you reduce the risk of developing arthritis.
Adjusting your diet can help you prevent or reduce the symptoms of arthritis. Certain foods can increase inflammation in the body and worsen the pain. You may want to avoid foods such as; dairy products, white-flour based foods, gluten, sugar, and fried foods.
Improving gut health can help reduce arthritis effects. Try adding foods with good gut bacteria such as fermented vegetables, probiotic foods (kefir, yogurt), and cultured foods.
Make sure to add turmeric into your diet as it is one of the best anti-inflammatory foods; it can help reduce inflammation.
Avoiding alcohol and smoking is also beneficial for arthritis. Alcohol not only damages the kidneys, but it also disrupts the functioning of other organs and causes inflammation in the body. And tobacco can cause the blood veins to clog, resulting in inflammation.
Using hot and cold treatments can reduce the pain and the inflammation caused by arthritis.
– You can apply an ice pack on your joints to relieve pain, inflammation, and swelling.
– Topical ointments and creams like capsaicin can also reduce joint pain.
– Using a heating pad to warm up your joints can help reduce stiffness and discomfort.
You can also get a hot stone massage to relieve your whole body and warm up your joints to reduce pain.
Arthritis can be prevented in some cases, but if you already have arthritis, the information given above can help you reduce the symptoms of it. In severe cases of arthritis, your doctor may recommend surgery, but it is essential to adopt a healthy lifestyle to live with it for less severe cases.
If you suspect that you may be suffering from arthritis, seek medical consultation as soon as possible. If arthritis is diagnosed early, it’ll be easier to prevent it from worsening or even reverse the symptoms.
Please share your thoughts with us in the comments section! What healthy activities do you practice to prevent arthritis?