If you haven’t noticed it yet, you will as you get older: the achiness that begins to steal into your joints if you keep them in one position for too long.
No matter how old you are, it’s never too late to take some proactive steps to improve your joint health and even prevent some problems from occurring in the first place.
At Regenerative Medical Group, our physicians believe protecting your joints is important.
Protecting your joints is important
A joint is a part of your body where two or more bones come together. You can move your body in the various ways you do because your bones in these joints work together with your muscles and other soft tissues.
While there are a number of joints throughout your body, the joints most often impacted by injury or disease include:
If one of your joints is hurt through an accident or injury, it won’t be able to function as it was designed. Your joints may even become chronically painful or, if your condition isn’t treated correctly, the problem could lead to a permanent disability.
Your best bet is to take action now to improve your joint health for tomorrow and prevent years of pain. Here are a few steps you can take:
One of the main reasons joints begin to lose function and become painful is because they’re under excess pressure from too much body weight. According to the Arthritis Foundation, for each extra pound you gain, you can put four times the stress on your joints, especially your knees.
On the other hand, if you drop some weight, the small effort you made will begin to pay off right away. Even losing just a little weight can improve the health of your joints in a way that matters.
Make your bones stronger
A diet that is rich in calcium helps to support bone health, which in turn boosts your joint function. You should include foods with plenty of calcium in your regular diet or take a calcium supplement to ensure bone strength and prevent issues, such as osteoporosis.
Another essential vitamin for improving joint health is vitamin C. It can even slow down the progression of existing osteoarthritis, a type of arthritis that wears down the protective cartilage of your joints.
Wear the right shoes
To preserve joint health in the long term, make sure you’re wearing shoes that won’t cause complications later. Trade those high heels and flip flops for flexible, supportive shoes with enough room for your toes. Rubber-soled shoes also cushion your body more and protect the joints in your feet and ankles during physical activity.
Keep on moving
A sedentary lifestyle isn’t good for your joints. Keep 30 minutes of strengthening exercises in your daily routine, and don’t forget to take frequent breaks if your job requires you to sit at a desk all day. These steps will go a long way toward preventing stiffness and pain.
If you already have arthritis or other joint diseases that make it difficult or painful to exercise, try aquatic exercises in a pool. Working out in the water helps build joint strength in a low-impact way that doesn’t put too much pressure on your joints.
- Limit your caffeine
It’s fine to drink a cup or two of coffee in the morning, but if you’re emptying a pot around the clock, the high doses of caffeine can begin to cause your bones to weaken. Weak bones are then more susceptible to arthritis and fractures that can cause permanent damage to your joints.
If you start to incorporate healthier habits into your day now, you can keep your joints functioning optimally and avoid a life of chronic pain.
If you are experiencing joint pain now, contact the Regenerative Medical Group to review your treatment options. You can call our office or use our online scheduler to book your appointment.
You don’t have to live in continual joint pain — let us help you and your loved one!