Millions of individuals struggle with arthritis pain and stiffness. There are several important steps arthritis sufferers can take to relieve achy, stiff joints. Naturopathic doctors can help you assess your diet and nutrition. Physical therapy can help reduce your pain and safely increase your activity. Working with both a physical therapist and a naturopathic doctor could be the formula you need to reduce your arthritis pain. Contact Carlson ProCare today to schedule an appointment with one of our physical therapists or with one of our partner Naturopathic Doctors.
Why Choose the Right Foods?
Nutrition can play a crucial role in easing arthritis pain and discomfort.
Avoid foods and beverages that can increase inflammation:
- Processed foods, MSG, and preservatives
- Refined carbohydrates
- Foods and beverages with added sugar
- Fried foods
- Margarine, shortening, or lard
- Processed meats like hot dogs
Add anti-inflammatory foods to your diet to help ease your arthritis pain:
- Olive oil
- Green leafy vegetables like kale, spinach, and collards
- Cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli
- Nuts, like almonds and walnuts
- Fish, like salmon, mackerel, tuna, sardines
- Fruits, like strawberries, blueberries, cherries, and oranges
- Ginger, turmeric
Source: Harvard Health Publishing. (2020.) Foods that Fight Inflammation. August 29, 2020. <https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/foods-that-fight-inflammation>.
Why Stay Physically Active?
While exercise won’t reverse arthritis, it can help slow its progression and ease painful symptoms. Sticking with a regular exercise routine can also help you shed a few pounds, which will ease the strain on your joints. A physical therapist can show you several types of stretches and exercises that address your areas of pain. Physical therapy may also help you avoid taking excessive amounts of medication to reduce pain.
A physical therapist is trained to evaluate your condition and provide the correct exercises to meet your needs. Your physical therapist might recommend aquatic therapy in a heated pool to ease your pain. In the physical therapy gym, you will receive highly skilled manual therapy to ease your symptoms, participate in gait, balance, and proprioceptive training, and perform therapeutic stretching and strengthening exercises and activities.
Why Work With a Physical Therapist?
A physical therapy treatment program can ease the pain from arthritis and help improve your daily life. Working with a physical therapist can help with the following:
- Strengthen Muscles—Muscles that surround and support aching joints can help limit arthritis pain when they’re stronger and more flexible. Physical therapy techniques can be used to increase strength.
- Increase Range of Motion—A physical therapy program can help keep muscles and ligaments loose and reduce stiffness. This will lessen pain and improve your overall range of mobility.
- Learn to Use Devices Correctly—A trained physical therapist can help you learn to use orthotics, walkers, and other assistive devices correctly. This will help lessen the strain on joints when you move.
What Methods Can a Physical Therapist Use?
A highly skilled and licensed physical therapist may use several treatment methods to help relieve arthritis pain. They may use manual therapy like joint mobilization, range of motion, stretching myofascial release, muscle energy techniques, visceral mobilization, craniosacral therapy, neural tissue tension release, soft tissue massage, instrument assisted soft-tissue massage, and other techniques to loosen muscles and connective tissues that surround arthritic joints. Your physical therapist will prescribe exercises, and perform proprioceptive, gait, and balance training to loosen your joints. They might utilize modalities like hot packs, cold packs, electrical stimulation, and ultrasound to reduce inflammation and treat tissues.
A qualified physical therapist can put together an individualized program to help reduce your arthritis pain and keep you as active as possible. Physical therapy is an excellent way to keep your joints, tendons, and muscles working together efficiently. Contact Carlson ProCare today to see how physical therapy can help you live a pain-free life!