Almost 25% of the U.S. population has arthritis. The older you are, the higher the risk of being diagnosed with this chronic health condition. Arthritis can limit mobility and make it hard to handle daily routines. You might have arthritis and find it difficult to help your parents in all the ways that they need. Your parents may have arthritis and need your help because of severe joint pain. Either way, these tips for you or your parent and their home care providers can help ease the discomfort.
Improve Their Diet
A healthy diet goes a long way when it comes to helping with arthritis. Vitamins and minerals can help you avoid flare-ups and inflammation. It also helps you or your loved one lose weight that may be putting extra strain on the joints.
Some of the foods to focus on include fish that are high in omega-3 fatty acids, seeds/nuts, whole grains, dried beans, and nightshade vegetables like tomatoes, eggplant, and bell peppers. As these foods make up the bulk of a Mediterranean diet plan, it’s an ideal diet to follow when you’re planning your weekly menu and shopping list.
Get Enough Exercise
It may seem counterproductive to exercise when your joints ache, but it’s important. Joints need the workout to stay as limber and loose as possible. Aim for 30 minutes a day.
Choose exercises that are easy on the joints. Walking and swimming are two of the best. Swimming is especially helpful as the water keeps some of the pressure off the joint. Riding a bicycle is another option.
Use Pain Relievers as Needed
When the pain is unbearable, an over-the-counter pain reliever helps reduce pain and swelling. Ibuprofen is one of the most popular options.
You don’t want to rely heavily on them. Generally, ibuprofen is recommended to be taken every four to six hours. If you find yourself needing another pill every hour or two, talk to your doctor about other options for relief from arthritis pain.
Consider pairing an over-the-counter pain reliever with heat. A heating pad on the aching joint is soothing and can ease the pain. If the pain is so bad that it affects your mobility, it may help to work with a physical therapist to help build muscle strength.
Hire Home Care Aides
When arthritis flares up, it can make it hard to do things independently. Arrange home care services to ensure your parents don’t feel alone and frustrated. Talk to our expert in home care to learn more about availability and prices.