World Arthritis Day 2022: Can exercise lessen the signs and symptoms of arthritis, enhance bone and joint function, and prevent long-term joint wear and tear? Here are the thoughts of a health professional.
The most common kind of arthritis, osteoarthritis, is thought to affect nearly everyone who lives a long life. Arthritis develops when a joint wears out due to aging, injury, or certain inflammatory disorders like gout and rheumatoid arthritis. It is mechanical wear and tears, but being overweight or obese also accelerates joint wear and tear. Some symptoms of arthritis include stiffness, joint pain, swelling, discomfort, limited range of motion, etc., and as we age, these symptoms get worse.
Dr. Sachin Bhonsle, an orthopedic surgeon at Fortis Hospital in Mulund, stated in an interview with HT Lifestyle that exercise has been shown to not only enhance function and lessen long-term wear and tear on the joints, but also to minimize the symptoms of arthritis. It might also do away with the requirement for a knee replacement. But when an arthritic joint is symptomatic, any exercise could make it worse, therefore it’s important to be cautious when picking these physical activities. Low-impact workouts that are gentle on the joints include yoga, walking, cycling, elliptical training, swimming, water walking, and group exercises. You should select exercises that you will love doing. That will cause the release of endorphins, which will increase your happiness.
He asserted that it is crucial to begin exercising gradually and added that it takes time for your body and joints to adjust to activity. Go slowly at first because arthritic pain may get worse. A few minutes several times per day is a terrific place to start. In the coming weeks and months, intensify the exercises. It’s crucial to incorporate variants of various exercise styles. Exercise can then concentrate on the entire body rather than just one specific body region. Yoga and stretching exercises greatly increase joint flexibility and prolong the life of the joints. Additionally, isometric workouts, elastic bands, and modest weights can all be used to strengthen muscles.
Swimming and water walking are resistance exercises that can be done even when arthritis is severe or at its final stage. This is because weight no longer becomes an issue once we are submerged in water. After all, there is no strain on the joints. As a result, these physical activities are painless and can provide the necessary workout for joints.
In addition to enhancing bone strength, flexibility, muscle strength, range of motion, and weight management also provide a significant advantage by enhancing balance and coordination. Exercises that focus on proprioception or balancing can help to further improve this. No matter how severe your arthritis is, you should start doing some exercises. For a month, try one. If not, try something else. Never give up. Build gradually and introduce variety. You will undoubtedly be able to reverse the symptoms. Exercise can not only slow the advancement of your arthritis, but it will also improve your quality of life, improve your sleep, and make you happy. However, make sure you inform your physiotherapist and doctor about the activity at all times.