The stiff, painful, swollen joints associated with arthritis can make simple activities like getting dressed or preparing a meal a challenging task. While there are a number of prescriptions and over the counter oral medications to help control arthritis pain, there are also more natural ways to cope. If you or an aging loved one are living with arthritis, Home Care Assistance of Albuquerque lists 5 simple ways to lessen arthritis pain:Warmth – Most patients find that warmth can help almost immediately with the pain and stiffness of arthritis. Warmth can take many forms: a heating pad or compress, an electric blanket or a shower or bath. No matter what the source, warmth helps increase circulation to the joints and keeps them supple and easier to move.
- Topical Medications – Oral medications are not the only way to control arthritis pain. There are many topical ointments on the market that you rub into the joint to help ease stiffness, pain and swelling. Most of these products are based either on menthol or salicylic acid (the active ingredient in aspirin). If you feel like these are not adequate, you can talk to your doctor about Voltaren cream, which is available by prescription and is known to bring arthritis relief.
- Gentle Exercise & Stretching – Movement of any kind can be beneficial to the joints, but studies have shown that gentle, deliberate exercises like tai chi or yoga are particularly therapeutic for arthritis patients. If you are interested in learning one of these disciplines in your own home, there are a number of excellent videos available online. If you want to keep the routine simpler, a walk or basic stretches during the day can keep your joints healthy and happy as well.
- Healthy Diet – Albuquerque elder care specialists recommend that seniors with arthritis take advantage of the natural anti-inflammatory properties of various foods to help prevent painful flare-ups and further damage to the joints. A diet that is rich is fatty fish, fresh fruits and vegetables, eggs, olive oil, and beans is a diet that will help reduce inflammation and promote overall joint health. In addition, this type of diet also has proven benefits for cardiac health and overall immunity.
- Natural Supplements – There are a number of natural supplements on the market that can help ease the symptoms of arthritis and make it easier to live a normal life. The most popular supplements for this include glucosamine (which helps to lubricate and repair the cartilage in the joints) and turmeric and fish oil (both of which have potent anti-inflammatory properties). Remember to let your doctor know if you are planning any medication changes, so that you can be warned if there is a risk of interaction with prescriptions you are currently taking.
- Taken together, these guidelines constitute a holistic approach to arthritis management. If followed, they can lead to a lifestyle which promotes joint health and reduces the chronic pain associated with this disease.
For more information about care for seniors with arthritis, contact Home Care Assistance of Albuquerque today. Along with flexible hourly and live-in care services, we also provide dementia, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and stroke home care in Albuquerque. Call 505-798-0800 to speak with a Care Manager and schedule your free, in-home consultation today.