While it may not be possible to completely get rid of your risk of developing arthritis, there are some things you can do to reduce your risk and delay the onset. Arthritis happens when cartilage wears away, causing your bones to rub against and damage each other, which is why you feel pain. There are some tips you can follow that may help arthritis from developing, which include:
1. Maintain a healthy body weight
Excess weight puts extra strains on your joints and cartilage, causing it to wear away sooner. To reduce your body weight, clean up your diet and start exercising if you aren’t already. Try to stick to lower impact exercises, especially if your joints are already painful.
2. Avoid high impact exercise
Avoid exercises such as running, plyometrics, and contact sports. Instead, try biking, walking, swimming, or low impact options on exercise videos to protect your joints. Sticking to low impact exercises can also help you prevent major injuries such as a ligament tear, which can contribute to arthritis.
3. Check your vitamin D
Have your doctor check your levels, and if they are low, consider taking a vitamin or increasing your natural sources of vitamin D. Some natural sources include fatty fish, dairy, and even natural sunlight.
4. Stay hydrated
Cartilage is comprised mostly of water. Dehydrated cartilage is more susceptible to injury, wear, and tear. Staying hydrated can also help you maintain a healthy weight.
5. Consider your technique
Whether you’re carrying heavy boxes or working out, make sure you’re always using the proper technique so you are not putting unneeded stress on your joints. Some good rules of thumb are to always lift with your legs and carry heavy objects close to your body.
Following these tips to reduce your risk of developing arthritis can go a long way. Not only will they make your joints happy, but they will probably make you happier as well.
If you are having severe problems with arthritis, you need to consult with an orthopedic doctor or orthopedic surgeon to see what other options are available for you. For professional help, contact the team at Michigan Hand and Wrist today.