Arthritis: the best ways to reduce pain and what to avoid

Will physical activity reduce or increase your arthritis pain? Here are some tips on exercise and other natural solutions for coping with arthritis symptoms and arthritis pain. Arthritis is one of the leading causes of pain and disability worldwide. Here are many tips for relieving the pain of arthritis and other conditions through exercise and stress reduction.

The bottom line: know as much as you can

Whatever your condition, it will be easier to get ahead of your pain if you:

– Learn everything you can about your condition, including what type of arthritis you have and if any of your joints are already damaged
– Use good advice and resources (therapist, naturopath, osteopath, chiropractor, acupuncturist, doctor)
– Tell your doctor if your pain changes

Daily routines

Pay attention to your joints, whether you are sitting, standing or working.

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– Move your joints

Do gentle stretches daily that move your joints to their full extent.

– Adopt a good posture

A physical therapist or osteopath can show you how to sit, stand, and move properly.

– Know your limits

Find a balance between activity and rest, and don’t overdo it.

Also, it is important to make lifestyle changes to lessen the pain.

– Manage your weight

Being overweight can increase arthritis complications and contribute to arthritis pain. The most effective way to manage weight is often to make gradual and permanent lifestyle changes, resulting in gradual weight loss.

– Stop smoking

Smoking causes stress on connective tissues, which can increase arthritis pain.


When you have arthritis, movement can decrease your pain and stiffness, improve your range of motion, strengthen your muscles and increase your endurance.

What to do ?

Choose the right types of activities. The ones that strengthen the muscles around your joints without damaging them. A physical therapist or occupational therapist can help you develop an exercise program tailored to your needs.

Focus on stretching. Range of motion exercises and progressive strength training. Include low-impact aerobic exercise, such as walking, cycling, or water exercise, to improve your mood and help control your weight.

What to avoid when it comes to physical activity

Avoid activities that involve high impact and repetitive movements, such as

To jump
High impact aerobics
Repeating the same movement, such as a tennis serve, over and over again

What to avoid if you don’t want to increase arthritis pain

– Overprocessing

Consult your doctor if you find yourself using over-the-counter pain relievers regularly.

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– Under treatment

Don’t try to ignore severe and prolonged arthritis pain. You may have joint inflammation or damage that requires daily medication.

– Don’t just focus on the pain

Depression is more common in people with arthritis. Doctors have found that treating depression not only reduces symptoms of depression, but arthritis pain as well.

Physical and emotional integration

It’s no surprise that arthritis pain has a negative effect on your mood. If daily activities cause you pain, you are bound to feel discouraged. But when these normal feelings escalate to create a constant refrain of scary, hopeless thoughts, your pain may actually get worse and harder to manage.

What to do ?

Among the therapies that interrupt the destructive interactions between body and mind are

– Cognitive behavioral therapy.

This effective and well-studied combination of talk therapy and behavior modification helps you identify – and break – cycles of self-destructive thoughts and actions.

– Relaxation therapy.

Meditate, do yoga, breathe deeply, listen to music, be in nature, write in a journal – do whatever helps you relax. Relaxation has no downside and can help relieve pain.

– Acupuncture.

Some people get pain relief through acupuncture treatments. When a trained acupuncturist inserts fine needles into specific locations on your body. It may take several weeks before you notice any improvement.

– Heat and cold.

The use of heat, such as applying heating pads to painful joints, taking hot baths or showers, can help relieve pain temporarily. Be careful not to burn yourself. Do not use heating pads for more than 20 minutes at a time.

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The use of cold, such as applying ice packs to sore muscles, can relieve pain and inflammation after strenuous exercise.

– Massage

Massage can temporarily improve pain and stiffness. Make sure your massage therapist knows where your arthritis affects you.

What to absolutely avoid

– To smoke.

If you are addicted to tobacco, you can use it as an emotional coping tool. But it’s counterproductive: The toxins in smoke put stress on connective tissue, which leads to more joint problems.

– A negative attitude.

Negative thoughts perpetuate themselves. As long as you dwell on them, they intensify, which can increase your pain and risk of disability. Instead, distract yourself with activities you enjoy, spend time with supportive people, and consider talking to a therapist.


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