7 Habits to Ease Arthritis Pain
Arthritis pain is not easy to deal with, especially if you’re someone who likes to stay busy, takes care of others or is always on the go. Did you know that some of the things you do every day could be making your pain worse? The good news is that just by altering a few habits, you may feel less pain and have less inflammation in your joints.
Wear comfortable shoes
Make sure your shoes fit you properly. This one step can make a big difference in the pain you feel in your feet, legs and hips every day. Save high heels for only special occasions or don’t wear them at all. Heels over 3 inches put significant strain on your knees and can increase pain. We all tend to opt for shoes that look good but may not feel great. It’s time for that to end if you’re in pain.
Exercise doesn’t always mean a workout at the gym. Options for movement are all around us. Take the dog or the kids for a walk or play with them in your backyard. Staying in one position too long tends to make arthritis pain worse, so any movement you can add to your day will help. At work, if you can’t take the stairs because you’re in too much pain, park farther away from your building to get more walking in. Choose low-impact activities like swimming over running or high-intensity aerobics. If the pain is keeping you from moving, try relieving that pain with BC® Arthritis first to help you get going.
Avoid or limit repetitive motion
If your work requires you to engage in repetitive motions such as typing, assembly work or packing, include stretching as part of your daily routine. You don’t even have to leave your workstation. During your breaks and when you are home, limit your time online on or your mobile device to keep pain in your fingers, hands and wrists at bay.
Control your weight
Staying at a healthy weight helps keep added pressure off your knees, ankles and hips. Arthritis is caused by excess wear and tear on your joints. If you’re overweight or obese, even losing 10 pounds can help you feel better.
Cut sugar and white flour from your diet
Processed foods—especially white carbohydrates like white bread, pasta and potato chips—are foods that increase inflammation. By eating less sugar and choosing whole grains, chickpea flour, quinoa and other less inflammatory foods, you’re attacking your pain at the source rather than relieving it once it comes. The Arthritis Foundation is a terrific resource for more information.
Have a busy day ahead? Be sure to build in easy ways to take breaks. Often, we get so caught up in our daily tasks and deadlines, we forget to pay attention to the cues our body gives us. If your energy is falling or pain is increasing, don’t push yourself too hard. Even if all you have time to do is take some deep breaths and stretch a little between projects at work or home, that can help.
Control your stress
Easier said than done, right? Deep breathing exercises, meditation and yoga all help control stress, but if those aren’t for you, choose something that makes you feel better. For example, listen to music more often, take a bath at the end of the day instead of a shower, read your favorite book in your most comfortable chair. The point is that stress increases muscle tension, which increases stress on your joints and can intensify joint pain. Schedule times in your day where you can take a minute to assess your tension and the need for a stress reliever.
Paying attention to your body’s cues is half the battle when you’re dealing with a condition like arthritis. Remember that BC® Powder can help. Our convenient BC® Arthritis stick packs make it easy to pop in your mouth and relieve minor arthritis pain fast.