The joints in your body act as cushions between your bones. They help you with movements like walking, bending your elbows, wiggling your toes, and turning your head. Joint health is important to lead an active lifestyle.
Sometimes the flu or a simple cold can trigger joint aches. Once you’re over the illness, the pain also disappears. If pain stems from conditions such as arthritis or gout, it might take a little longer to feel pain relief.
Most patients experience joint pain at some point, but that doesn’t always mean a severe or chronic illness is to blame. The experts at the Orthopaedic Institute of Henderson offer quick and effective joint pain relief. We also provide specialized treatment plans to keep your joints healthy. Whether your discomfort is temporary or chronic, these healthy habits can help ease or prevent your joint pain.
Keep your joints healthy
You can reduce soreness and prevent joint pain by cultivating healthy habits. Our physicians individually design a joint health management plan for every patient experiencing joint pain. To avoid painful wear and tear and inflammation, you can practice these preventive measures to keep your joints healthy and supple.
Carrying extra body weight puts too much pressure on your joints, causing pain. Wear and tear occur faster with the added stress on your joints. When you reach a healthy weight, you reduce pressure, stopping pain and signs of deterioration.
Healthy joints need nutrients from food to stay healthy. If your diet lacks in necessary vitamins and minerals, your cartilage breaks down. A healthy diet that supports joint health includes:
- Vegetables, fruits, and nuts
- Lean dairy products
- Lean meat like poultry
- Fish such as herring, tuna, and mackerel
It’s also best to avoid excessive sugar, mass-produced baked goods, and fast food.
Avoid alcohol and cigarettes
Nicotine causes lasting damage to joints, and smokers are at higher risk of joint pain from arthritis. Nicotine promotes inflammation in the joints, which causes pain. Smoking damages musculoskeletal tissues, increasing the risk of injury and disease. Rotator cuff tears in smokers are almost twice as large as those in nonsmokers. Additionally, smoking makes you more likely to suffer from injuries like tendinitis or bursitis and have a higher risk of low back pain and rheumatoid arthritis.
Resting your body is vital during flare-ups, but a lack of physical activity weakens muscles and causes joint stiffness. The Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center recommends exercise to keep muscles strong and joints lubricated. Regular activity reduces stiffness and pain and boosts energy and stamina by decreasing fatigue and improving sleep.
Know your limits
Exercise, weight loss, and proper nutrition can reduce joint pain, but don't overdo it. Start slowly if you’re just beginning an exercise routine or lifestyle change. Take long walks or incorporate small amounts of weight training. Create and build new habits gradually to sustain and support long-term joint health.
The best way to begin your joint health journey is by speaking to a specialist at the Orthopaedic Institute of Henderson. Call today or request an appointment online for more information.