Osteoarthritis is a slow-progressing degenerative joint disease that affects over 20 million Americans. Osteoarthritis is a form of arthritis that occurs when the cartilage breaks down causing the bone underneath to fail. Symptoms of osteoarthritis include: joint soreness, stiffness, joint pain and poor coordination.
Since there is no cure for osteoarthritis, it is important to create a management plan that will help you cope with the disease and manage the pain.
Below are six ways to manage your osteoarthritis pain:
1 – Educate yourself
As with any illness or disease, the first step to managing osteoarthritis is to educate yourself. Educating yourself on what osteoarthritis is and how it works will help you better understand what’s going on with your body.
2 – Consult with a doctor you trust
It’s important to speak with your primary care doctor who will do the initial evaluation of your symptoms. It’s a process to get diagnosed with osteoarthritis, so it’s crucial that you have a doctor that you trust and respect. Additionally, your doctor can help you manage your pain and go over the available treatment options for osteoarthritis.
3 – Plan your tactics
Coming up with tactics for tackling osteoarthritis should be included in your management plan. Tactics can include: managing your osteoarthritis symptoms, improving joint mobility and flexibility, maintaining your ideal weight, and exercising daily. It may sound overwhelming at first, but start slowly.
4 – Get a support system
Living with osteoarthritis is a battle and some days are more difficult than others. Having supportive family and friends will help you get through the bad days. It’s also helpful to turn to others who are also suffering from osteoarthritis since they know what you’re going through.
5 – Exercise
Exercise is important for people with osteoarthritis. Increasing your flexibility with stretching exercises will help reduce joint stiffness and pain. Additionally, it’s crucial to maintain your ideal weight. If you are overweight, it will worsen osteoarthritis symptoms such as pain and stiffness.
6 – Maintain a healthy diet
A healthy diet will help with reducing inflammation, keeping you energized and helping maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight impacts weight-bearing joints, which will further increase the pain associated with osteoarthritis. For every pound you are overweight, three to five pounds worth of added pressure is added to each knee as you walk. Work with a dietitian to create an ideal eating plan that fits your needs.
If you suffer from osteoarthritis, it’s important to properly manage your disease. Advanced Clinical Care has ongoing osteoarthritis clinical trials in Worcester, MA that may help with managing your symptoms. Fill out our form to be contacted about our clinical trials for osteoarthritis and other diseases or give us a call at 508-755-0201.