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Arthritis is a painful and debilitating condition that can be difficult to manage. The disease can significantly affect your quality of life, making it important to treat intelligently. While there are several professional medical approaches that can do wonders with arthritis, not everyone has access to such healthcare.

Fortunately, there are a number of things arthritis sufferers can do from home or at work to drastically improve the condition. 

What Is Arthritis?

Arthritis refers to the chronic inflammation of the joints across the body, which, in turn, leads to many detrimental symptoms, such as chronic pain, movement restriction, muscle degradation, and the mental health consequences of suffering from a long-term condition.

There are two main types of arthritis:

  • Osteoarthritis: The most common kind of arthritis is Osteoarthritis. This condition starts off degrading the cartilage within the joints, which causes significant swelling. If continued and unmitigated, the condition can cause bony spurs called osteophytes and ligament strain. 

Osteoarthritis usually starts developing in adults from age 40 onwards but can affect people of all ages.

  • Rheumatoid arthritis: This form of arthritis works a lot differently than osteoarthritis since it triggers the body's immune system to attack certain joints. The condition can eventually spread across the body and cause organ and bone damage. 

Rheumatoid arthritis, too, commonly begins from age 40 onwards and is three times more likely to affect women compared to men. Because of the potential complications with rheumatoid arthritis, it’s vital to see a rheumatologist as soon as you’re aware that you have the condition.

Unfortunately, there’s no cure for arthritis. But, there are several treatments and practices available to mitigate the condition and slow it down. 

Below are 5 efficient ways to help you manage your arthritis: 

1. Losing Weight

The problems caused by arthritis are exacerbated by being overweight. That’s why many medical professionals will first recommend losing weight before considering stronger treatment plans. 

Being overweight places more strain on your muscles and joints, inflaming the symptoms of arthritis. Many mild sufferers of arthritis find their problems completely disappear after cutting their weight down as their joints are under far less stress. 

However, when other factors are involved, losing weight will mitigate but not completely eradicate symptoms.

2. Lifestyle Changes

Along with changes to one's diet, making alterations in other areas can significantly improve your quality of life with arthritis. The sedentary lifestyle of the modern person can contribute towards arthritis since your body is frequently forced to hold unnatural positions for extended periods of time in front of a computer. 

To improve the condition of your body and increase blood flow to help, ensure that you get enough exercise every week. Doing so will reduce inflammation.

3. Stretching Regime

A lot of the stiffness and inflammation of arthritis comes from incorrectly extending our bodies. Hence, implementing a daily stretching regime into your life will do wonders for arthritis. 

Stretches are excellent for lubricating joints and endowing them with strength. Regular stretching also improves the flow of blood across your body, which will speed up recovery time and help reduce inflammation.

4. Supplements and Herbal Remedies

There are several supplements and ingredients that arthritis sufferers claim can ease their symptoms. While one must be careful listening to anecdotal evidence, there's plenty of science supporting certain ingredients, like CBD, turmeric, and ginger. 

If you're currently taking medication for arthritis, it’s important to consult with your doctor before adding any new supplements to your daily intake. It’s also important to note that ingesting supplements and remedies should never be considered as a ‘cure-all’ approach that’ll make your arthritis disappear. Instead, it should be undertaken together with other treatments for optimal results. 

5. Hot and Cold Therapy

A tried and tested therapy that can treat all kinds of physical problems, hot and cold therapy is surprisingly effective at treating inflammation. With everyday household objects like frozen vegetables or hot water bottles, it's also a form of treatment that’s very easy to implement at home. 

In general, heat should be applied earlier in the day to loosen up the joints. While cold therapy is most effective after your muscles and joints have been in use as the cool temperature reduces inflammation and swelling.

Conclusion

There are so many ways that arthritis can be treated at home, so you don't always need expensive medical treatment to get help. 

Simple hot and cold treatments can work wonders for acute flare-ups of the condition, while dietary and lifestyle changes can help you manage arthritis over the long-term. 

However, if you find that your arthritis symptoms are not easing up, there is simply no substitute for the professional advice of a doctor. This is especially true of rheumatoid arthritis sufferers as your immune system is involved.

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