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Tips for Better Joint Health

If you have arthritis or engage in sports, work or other activities that require repetitive motion and want to minimize joint pain, there are steps you can take to keep your joints healthier.

• Weight Lifting and resistance training is especially good for increasing bone density in women. 
• Taking calcium and vitamin D together is important for women to prevent osteoporosis.
• Flexibility obtained by daily stretching helps maintain functional range of motion as well as decreased risk of injury.
• Exercise nourishes cartilage in your joints. Activity lubricates your joints keeping them from becoming stiff. Remember motion is lotion!
• Low-impact exercises such as swimming, biking, and walking help you stay active without putting strain on painful joints.
• Make sure to lift properly; watch your posture and rest in between activities to lessen pressure on joints. 
• There are four pounds of pressure on your joints for every one pound of body weight. Staying at a healthy weight relieves joints of excess pressure which causes less pain and increases joint mobility. 
• Using ice can help with minor aches and pains and improve exercise tolerance.
• Using heat can help stretch muscles around joints and promote relaxation. 
• Properly fitted footwear is essential in keeping legs aligned and pressure off joints. The use of orthotics, heel wedges, or rubber sole inserts can help accomplish this.
• Over the counter medications such as Glucosamine and Chrondrotitin, provide some pain relief, but do not rebuild cartilage. If you get good results from using these medications, continue using them. If you have not noticed a change in 30 days or more, try something else. Don’t throw your money away on over the counter medications that do not work.
• Getting a proper diagnosis of osteoarthritis is most important. Visit your primary care physician, or an orthopedic physician to help you through this process.  

Call 505.609.6078 for more information.
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