Your older adult shouldn’t have to suffer with ongoing arthritis pain.
This disease can’t be cured, but can be kept under control with a combination of treatments and lifestyle changes. Be persistent, it might take some trial and error before finding what works for your older adult.
1 in 5 adults in the U.S. have been diagnosed with arthritis by a doctor. Those numbers are huge; with those odds, it’s likely your older adult is living with arthritis pain.
Some people dismiss arthritis as occasional aches or stiffness, but chronic arthritis pain can be so severe that seniors are forced to make unwanted lifestyle changes.
For example, serious arthritis pain prevents good sleep, makes it difficult to get up and walk to the bathroom, and forces older adults to avoid many everyday tasks and activities.
Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis. It’s a joint disease where the joint cartilage is breaking down over time.
This causes swelling and inflammation which leads to pain and stiffness. Being overweight, having previous joint injuries, and being older are all risk factors for arthritis.
For persistent, ongoing pain, ignoring it will only make things worse. Arthritis is a degenerative disease, which means it’s not going to get better on its own.
Untreated arthritis can lead to bigger health problems like obesity, diabetes, or heart disease because of forced inactivity. Plus, being in chronic pain decreases quality of life; imagine how you’d feel if you constantly ached all over and couldn’t move without pain.
Managing the pain and inflammation helps older adults become more active, reduce arthritis severity, and improve overall health.
Some older adults don’t want to admit they have chronic pain or that they need help.
Observe their behavior to find clues that arthritis pain is causing problems. If you notice changes in your senior’s daily routine, investigate to see if arthritis pain could be the reason.
Combining treatments to manage pain or reduce inflammation with lifestyle changes like exercise is a good way to keep arthritis pain under control.
Talk with your older adult’s doctor to see if their current medication is an effective way to relieve arthritis pain and get recommendations on helpful exercises.
If your loved one has been diagnosed with arthritis, there will probably be several healthcare professionals involved in their care.
But the most important part of arthritis care is self-management.
Self-management is about making positive and healthy lifestyle choices, and acknowledging and addressing the physical and emotional effects of arthritis.
Having arthritis affects everyone differently, so learn and practice assisting your loved one with what helps them to live well and thrive.
Self-management and your help can make a big difference in how much arthritis affects your senior’s quality of life so they can continue to do the things that are important to them.
Tips For Helping Your Loved One With Arthritis Self Management
Work With The Doctor
Before the appointment, observe or talk with your older adult over a few days to figure out where the pain is, when it’s worst, and what activities they struggle with.
Write down these observations and discuss them with the doctor. Having complete information helps the doctor understand the pain, rule out any other problems, and recommend treatments.
Use Heat Therapy
Heat loosens up stiff joints and muscles, stimulates circulation, and reduces muscle spasms. Try heating pads, microwaveable heat wraps, air-activated heat patches, or pain relieving creams to see what works best.
You can also make a DIY heat pack by microwaving a wet towel for 1-2 minutes. Put the hot towel in a plastic bag and wrap that with a dry towel.
Use Cold Therapy
If heat isn’t doing the trick, try cold therapy. Cold packs may be uncomfortable at first, but they can numb deep pain. Rubbing ice cubes or a small bag of ice over painful areas also reduces swelling and inflammation.
Pro tip: Some get the most arthritis pain relief using both heat and cold.
Heat therapy sometimes works best earlier in the day because it relaxes the muscles around the joints. Cold therapy at the end of the day can minimize inflammation from daily activities.
Many older adults with arthritis don’t want to move because it hurts. But not moving actually makes arthritis pain worse. It’s important that your older adult doesn’t stay in the same position for too long. Throughout the day, they need to move, flex, and use the joints that hurt.
Encourage your older adult to move around at least once an hour. If they resist, be creative and invent a reason for them to get up or change position. Bathroom trips count too! They should also add daily exercises to their regular routine.
What is the most powerful arthritis treatment ever developed to help restore you to a healthy, pain-free, and vigorous life–for the rest of your life?
It’s the very same breakthrough that has:
–Helped more arthritis sufferers than drugs, surgery, or any other treatment–without dangerous side effects.
–Been widely prescribed by medical doctors and other health practitioners.
The answer? Exercise.
Here are the right exercised for your kind of arthritis, pain-level, age, occupation, and hobbies.
And they’re the most effective exercises for arthritis available anywhere–rated “best” by arthritis sufferers themselves in an unprecedented nationwide survey…supported by medical doctors…and backed by the latest research.
only this book has them.
Let Arthritis: What Exercises Work work wonders in ending your arthritis pain–forever!
It doesn’t matter what their fitness level is. Even carefully walking around the kitchen using a walker or going back and forth in the hallway is a good joint workout. Regular activity will bring arthritis pain relief.
Having your older adult massage and rub their painful joints helps warm up and relax the area. It’s a great wind-down activity and might help your older adult sleep better. If massage is painful, try using heat beforehand to warm the area first. Lotions or oils can also help.
Recommended for arthritis massage: The Village Company Muscle Therapy Relief Natural Lotion
- Let village naturals therapy muscle relief lotion make a house call
- Massage away muscle aches and pains while aromatherapy vapors help you feel better
- Our deep penetrating therapeutic formula is enriched with vitamins and skin softening ingredients that will help improve skin circulation and appearance
- This product has never been tested on animals and does not contain animal-derived ingredients
- This product contains juniper to calm and restore, sage to soothe and comfort, and wintergreen to relax and invigorate, it’s 90.74% naturally derived
Maintain a Healthy Weight
Being at a healthy weight is better for joints because more body weight = more pressure on joints. Did you know that losing just 1 pound takes 4 pounds of pressure off each knee?!
The E-Factor Diet teaches the hidden factors that prevent people from losing weight. For me, this has been the diet program that trumps all others.
Instead of recommending simple solutions like “eat better” and “exercise more”, The E-Factor Diet focuses in on the core problems with weight loss programs, and works for both large and small weight loss goals, and for maintenance. Just simply, it works.
Add Omega-3’s to Reduce Inflammation
Take omega-3 supplements or eat fish like salmon, sardines, herring, and tuna to get more omega-3 fatty acids. This helps reduce inflammation levels in the body and can help decrease arthritis pain.