Whether age 20 or age 60, joints start to get achy and painful. If you are looking for a way to help keep them as pain-free as possible for as long as possible (preventatively or retroactively), the right tips can make all of the difference. The key to joint health is going to be in access to the correct information, after all.
In dealing with joint pain for the first time, or chronically, many will automatically turn to pain medication. But that just blankets the symptoms short-term instead of dealing with the root problem.
Top 10 ways to support your joint health
One of the essential consideration points is a joint health supplement , but you will want to understand what goes into a great supplement and how that correlates to other kinds of supportive tips for joint health. Here are 10 realistic ways to help support your joint health that doesn’t involve unnecessary medication.
1. Keep your weight as stable and as healthy as possible
We all have a specific range where our weight should be. One of the best things that we can do for the good of our joints is to stay within that doctor-recommended range for weight. Having too much weight puts unnecessary stress on your joints, which will prematurely put wear and tear on them, leading to pain and stiffness.
2. Consider a calcium supplement
When you think of joints, your attention may very well go right to omega-3s, and for a good reason. But, considering a bone density supplement is also essential when looking for an all-encompassing approach to joint health. We have calcium in our joints as well as in the cartilage that lines the joints. If we are deficient in calcium, they can start to degrade and lead to pain and discomfort. Increasing the right kind of calcium can help keep the fluid in our joints and the cartilage surrounding it healthy and working as it should.
3. Strong muscles make all the difference
Our muscles support us in movement, but they also help our joints in their movements too. By building up muscle around the joints that aren’t feeling their best, they’ll offer better, much-needed support to those joints. It also helps keep the blood flow moving, which is important for healing and pain management (more on that next). You can find targeted exercises for the muscles that need support.
4. Keep moving even when it hurts
It’s a habit to rest the joints when they are sore. Maybe you skip the workout or take the elevator instead of the stairs. But keeping the joints moving carefully is actually going to help. Stiffness and pain will ease when you prioritize safe and healthy movement to those problem areas. Preventing them from moving will just make it worse because you’re restricting the blood flow.
5. A flexibility-focused, low-impact workout
You aren’t going to feel up to running a 5k when your knees are sore, of course, but finding a low-impact workout is going to be a great way to help build up strength in those joints. You can also improve healing that way. The goal will be to find a workout routine focused on flexibility and low impact on your joints. Common examples include swimming aerobics, pilates, or certain types of yoga.
6. Range-stretching physiotherapy exercises
While it often gets a bad reputation, physiotherapy exercises, which are designed to help you increase your range of movement through carefully targeted stretches, will help increase your overall range of motion. This carefully guided increase in movement will help improve your joint’s comfort in doing those regular daily activities that previously felt painful.
7. Cold/heat and massage therapy
When the pain hits, you’ll also find a temperature-based therapy, and massage therapy can offer a lot of targeted relief. For those who are dealing with inflammation, cold therapy can be a great support. If you are dealing with throbbing pain or healing pain, many find heat can help increase blood flow, which will reduce the pain. Targeted massage therapy helps improve circulation, too, for even more relief.
8. Stay hydrated
Hydration is a crucial element of your body’s fuel. When you dehydrate yourself, you automatically put more stress on your joints (not to mention your whole body). Staying hydrated helps your body keep itself working correctly, and that includes easier pain management.
9. Rest and sleep when you need it
Our bodies recharge themselves as we sleep. When you combine something like a joint health supplement with proper sleep and rest, the body will help strengthen the joint and restore it to its best version on a nightly basis. This often will feel like reduced stiffness in the morning and ease in getting up those three flights of stairs.
10. Pay attention to your body’s signals
What works for one person might not work for another. Pain is there to help us understand what joints need attention, after all. There is “good” pain like muscle soreness after a workout or physio exercises, And there is “bad” pain, which is often described as “hot” or “shooting.” Know the difference between “good” and “bad” pain so that you know when to “push through it” and when to take a step back and rest that sore joint.
Support a healthier body
When put into action correctly, you’re going to be able to enjoy a healthier and stronger body that will feel better than just popping a pain pill. Some of these options, like physiotherapy and rest, make sense. Adding a bone density supplement and continuing to move the joint for circulatory reasons may not seem so logical. All of these will help you keep those joints as healthy as possible. The good news is that these will help your “good” joints as much as they will your “bad” ones, so it’s the gift that keeps on giving.
Pain-free and healthy joints start and end, with a practical approach to what causes that pain and how to treat it from a holistic point of view. These 10 tips and suggestions will offer you some support in doing what’s best for your short-term healing and long-term joint health.