If you’re living with pain from your arthritis, there’s no reason to just suck it up anymore. There are a variety of options to help you relieve at least some of the pain.
Depending on the type and location of arthritis, certain tips will help more than others, but a few experts and people who have suffered from arthritis have pulled together several suggestions for pain management.
Kat Elton, an occupational therapist and author of “A Resilient Life: Learning to Thrive, Not Just Survive with Rheumatoid Arthritis,” has lived with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis since she was two years old.
Here are nine of her general suggestions for arthritic pain relief:
1) Move your body every day. Pay attention to your pain and move within your limits, but know when you can push it (if your inflammation and swelling isn't very high).
2) Use heat/cold — heat for muscle relaxation, cold for swelling.
3) Vibration massagers work on the gate control theory of pain. Basically you are distracting the nerve endings that transmit pain).
4) Topical analgesics can bring relief.
5) Braces help. Elton has used all kinds for many joints.
6) Compression — both stockings and gloves — works.
7) Get enough rest. Very important — sleep and rest are vital for repair and regeneration, especially when living with pain.
8) Delegate tasks that wear you down — you can even trade hard tasks for ones that are easier on your body.
9) Massage/far infrared saunas are great for pain if you have the funds.
Carol Michaels, founder and creator of Recovery Fitness, said that it’s important to realize that arthritis not only has a physical toll, but also an emotional toll. Recovery Fitness is an exercise program that aims to help cancer patients recover from treatments and surgery,
According to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2012, one-third of adults in the United States living with arthritis, who are 45 years or older, also suffer from either anxiety or depression.