Chronic pain conditions are dishearteningly common in the disabled community and arthritis is no different. It’s one of the most prevalent conditions our customers have to face and although it effects everyone differently the two main symptoms are the same – pain and stiffness (due to inflammation of the joints). Given the high rate of prevalence occasionally the severity and effect on an individual can unfortunately been downplayed; but it’s important our customers know they aren’t alone.
It’s one thing knowing arthritis is silently effecting people’s day to day life but quite another to know what can be done to help, aside from traditional medication. Whether it’s you personally who’s dealing with the condition, or a loved one you know that is struggling the bright side is that there are small actions that can help.
Why not try a few of the following?
- Exercise. Low impact exercise can increase flexibility and muscle tone around the joints for additional support. It’s also a great way to manage your weight – a healthy BMI puts less strain on the joints while you’re moving around.
- Diet. Nature is a great healer and there are lots of super foods which have natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Try spicing it up with turmeric added to a few dishes, or if you prefer the herbal supplement route then stinging nettle and devil’s claw are both great options.
- Hot and Cold Therapy. Although this will not help with the cause of arthritis it can help alleviate symptoms. A warm bath or cold compress can help the affected area when pain is particularly bad. Keeping hands and feet warm in general can also help avoid flare-ups.
- Acupuncture. Acupuncture is traditionally a Chinese medicine that involves putting small needles in various pressure points through-out the body to help alleviate pain. Whilst not everyone’s cup of tea it is generally painless, and the benefits have been well documented.
- Self-care. Take it easy! Looking after yourself is important, and anything that makes you wind down can have a therapeutic effect. Whether it’s a massage, a lay-in, or putting your feet up with a cup of tea, reducing stress and resting as necessary can be as important as everything else (and let’s be honest, far easier to adhere too!)
Please do remember to talk to your doctor before trying any new remedies or supplements to make sure it’s a safe option for you.