How to Prevent Arthritis


Arthritis, a medical condition that affects the joints, causes inflammation, stiffness and sometimes excruciating pain. Patients who suffer from arthritis have difficulty moving their hands and feet and feel an overall discomfort, day after day. Arthritis has over 100 forms. Osteoarthritis, one of the most frequently occurring forms of arthritis, is a degenerative condition, which means the symptoms get worse with age. Though you can treat the symptoms of arthritis to a certain extent and slow down the progression of the disease, instead try to prevent it entirely. Most patients can never recover from the damage to the joints from arthritis and experience symptoms their whole lives.

1. Exercise a few times a week. Make physical exercising part of your life. Maybe you like jogging or riding your bicycle, or maybe you prefer aerobics or swimming. Exercise for at least one-half hour, two or three times a week. Studies show sedentary people have a lot more chances of developing arthritis than active people. Don’t avoid movement in your daily activities. If you can take the stairs instead of the elevator, do it. If you can walk to work or ride a bicycle, leave the car at home. These little daily routines add up and keep your bones, muscles and joints healthy. Exercising also supports a strong immune system, which can fight any disease, including arthritis, more easily.

2. Pace yourself and learn to relax. Stressful situations trigger neck and muscle pain. A tense body puts pressure on the joints, damaging them over the long run. Find relaxing activities and take your time, every day, to relax. Listen to some calming music, take a bath with essential oils, read a book or go for a walk in the park. Each of us has her favorite relaxing activities, so find yours and relax as often as possible.

3. Sleep eight hours every night. Resting proves as important as having an active life. For a good night’s sleep, take one-half hour to an hour to relax before going to bed. Don’t drink coffee in the evenings and don’t eat before going to sleep. The body needs plenty of time to recover from daily activities, so don’t deprive your muscles and bones of the rest they need.

4. Keep good body posture. The posture proves very important for the health of your joints. Lift weights to develop strong back muscles and keep a straight posture.

5. Lose any extra weight. Obese people have more chances of developing arthritis because of the pressure their bodies put on their joints. Extra weight especially affects ankles, knees and hips. Keep a healthy diet rich in fruit and vegetables. Eat fish two or three times a week. Fish contains Omega-3 fatty acids that keep tissues and skin young. If you don’t have digestive problems, include cayenne pepper powder in your meals from time to time. Cayenne pepper benefits joints, reducing inflammation.

6. Sleep on a firm surface. Even though a soft mattress might seem more comfortable, a firm mattress proves healthier for your musculoskeletal system.

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About the Author: Andrew Reinert is a health care professional who loves to share different tips on health and personal care. He is a regular contributor to MegaHowTo and lives in Canada.

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