As you age, it’s common to experience some joint pain. However, when joint pain moves from mild to debilitating, your daily life is negatively impacted. We’re sharing some tips on how to promote healthy joints as you age so that joint pain does not affect your everyday life. 

  1. Stay in motion. When you make an effort to exercise daily, you can maintain and improve your joint health. Many people who experience joint pain are worried that exercise will make their joint pain worse, so they avoid exercising. Movement, however,  eases joint stiffness, joint pain, and strengthens the muscles surrounding the joints. Exercising also helps you to maintain and lose weight, which benefits your joints in the long run. 
  2. Mindfully protecting your joints. There are a few ways to be mindful of protecting your joints. One of the ways is to listen to your body. If you’re experiencing joint pain from exercise, don’t just push through it. Most of the time, your body is trying to tell you something, so listen. Pay attention to proper body mechanics and balance activity and rest, don’t overdo it. 
  3. Maintain an ideal weight. This one is important for your joint health. Carrying excess body weight adds unnecessary stress to our joints. 
  4. Participate in low-impact exercise. Activities such as swimming and biking lessen the impact on your joints, which helps your joints to be healthier. 
  5. Hit the gym a few times a week. When you participate in strength training exercises, you strengthen the muscles surrounding your joints. This can decrease your risk of joint injury and pain later on.
  6. Incorporate some range of motion exercises in your daily workouts. These help to increase your mobility and flexibility, which in turn relieves stiffness and pain.
  7. If you’re deficient in vitamin D and experience low levels of calcium, supplements could be beneficial for you. Your doctor can test you for low levels of both of these and recommend a supplement for you. Sufficient levels of vitamin D and calcium promote bone health, which will benefit your joints.
  8. Quit smoking. Some people are unaware that smoking negatively impacts bone and joint health significantly.
  9. Strengthen your core. Stronger abdominal and back muscles help your balance. That means you’re less likely to fall or get injured. Add core strengthening exercises to your routine. Pilates and yoga are great workouts to try.
  10. Know your limits. It’s normal to have some muscle aches after you exercise. But if you hurt for more than 48 hours, you may have overdone it. Don’t push so hard next time. Working through the pain can lead to injury or damage.

When you follow these guidelines, you’re setting yourself up for healthy joints as you age. If you are experiencing joint pain, don’t hesitate to reach out to schedule your appointment with Dr. Hicken. By seeking medical care promptly when you experience joint pain, you’ll be able to recover more quickly as you follow your treatment plan. To schedule your appointment, give us a call at 435-787-2000.