What to Expect from Living with Arthritis & How to Relieve Symptoms
The challenges that you encounter during daily life can often be difficult, but with arthritis, things can become increasingly tough. Arthritis affects an estimated 10 million people in the UK alone, and even though it’s more common in the senior generation, it can actually hit at any age. The condition is most definitely life changing, as it can cause inflammation, pain and stiffness in your joints – therefore making movement strenuous and sometimes painful.
When diagnosed with arthritis, one of the first common worries people have is whether or not they will have to stop working. Fortunately, improved medical treatments and equality laws over the years have made it so many sufferers can actually continue working. This obviously depends on the line of work you happen to be in and how severe your arthritis is. For most people, there are plenty of incentives to carrying on working – it doesn’t only help you sustain your income, many sufferers believe that staying employed takes their mind of the arthritis and make them feel happier and healthier. There’s no doubting the fact that you may find working more difficult, but the support you need should be provided to you from your employer. In some cases, arthritis can become so painful that it stops people from carrying on working – if you are in this position, it’s important to find out what benefits you are entitled to claim.
Being diagnosed with arthritis means you may need to rethink the way you perform everyday tasks. It’s often a good idea to learn new ways of carrying out simple actions. It’s a huge benefit to learn to use your stronger, larger joints rather than your more weak, smaller joints. For example, when pushing open doors try using your shoulders to push rather than your hands. It’s also important to minimise any movements and positions that make you feel stiff. But try to avoid sitting in the same position all day, too. It’s very beneficial to plan your day out, so you can perform tasks that require more effort during times where you feel less stiff and sore. To begin with, these changes will seem like a huge trouble, but over time you will find that you simply get used to them and make them part of your daily routine.
It’s often a worry to some people that arthritis will stop them from being active. Fortunately, as long as you choose the right types of exercises, keeping active won’t make your condition any more severe. As a matter of act, exercising can improve your joints and increase your range of movement, as well as give you more energy throughout the day. If you are unsure on what kind of exercises to do, consider asking your local GP. In usual cases, the best ways to stay active include walking, swimming, cycling, yoga and dancing.
Being diagnosed with arthritis can also have an impact on your eating habits. Some foods have been shown to help reduce pain and inflammation. Eating oily fish, for instance, can reduce the symptoms of the condition. The crucial thing to remember is to have a healthy, balanced diet to provide all the nutrients your body needs. Your diet should include plenty of fibre, fruit, vegetables, low fat foods and should be high in starch. Bare in mind that by eating too much and gaining weight can put extra strain on your joints – especially your feet, hips, knees and ankles – therefore making your arthritis more severe.
To help make everyday life easier, it’s often a huge benefit for arthritis sufferers to modify their home. These modifications can be kept very simple, for example keeping things you need on a regular basis, like clothes and food, within easy accessibility. Adjustable furniture like riser recliner chairs and beds can also make life much more convenient. Getting into and out of your sitting and sleeping positions is made extremely easy and requires very little effort. Some of Rise & Recline’s adjustable furniture products contain massage settings that can help ease the pain and ache of arthritis. As well as adjustable furniture, there are other useful modifications you can make to your home like a stair lift, walk-in shower or raised toilet seats.
There’s no use trying to avoid and neglect your arthritis. It’s important to realise that your day-to-day life will change, and you have to prepare for this. However there are plenty of ways to make everyday life much easier for yourself, whilst still living a good fulfilling life.