For many individuals today, one of the most frustrating side effects of the aging process comes with the aches and pains that most tend to experience as they grow older. While these aches and pains can come in all different forms and types, they typically are most noticeable in the joints.
Joint pain can be particularly frustrating because it can impact your ability to move and enjoy life in the way you want to. Many people find their quality of life decreases significantly when they have to deal with constant joint pain. Even if you aren’t a particularly active individual, joint pain can make walking, sitting, standing and even the simplest of movements painful and challenging. Plus, joint pain may be a sign of serious poor joint health which can lead to even more significant health concerns such as a loss of mobility and range of motion, increased fall risk, decreased flexibility, strains, sprains and dislocations.
Think about all of the stress you have put on your joints throughout the years. Decades of movement and exercise are forces that can really take a toll on your joints, which is why this is such a common issue among seniors today. The good news is there are some great tips for seniors who want to enjoy better joint health and more pain-free lives. Keep these senior joint tips in mind, they can help you or a loved-one enjoy the comfortable, pain-free life you deserve while enjoying more joint mobility and a more active life.
Engage in Low-Impact Exercises
Exercise is one of the best things that any person can do in order to improve their overall joint health. While many think that working out will only cause their joint pain to increase, it can actually only make the issue better. It may be uncomfortable at first to start moving and exercising, but take it slow and over time you will find this can be far less painful than you imagine.
When it comes to exercising for better joint health, low-impact exercises are the best possible solution. Yes, jogging is great for a slimmer waistline, but high-impact workouts such as this can be really hard on the joints and it increases the chance of injury.
Low-impact exercises on the other hand can help get the joints moving and healthy without all of the extra strain and they can still have some great cardiovascular benefits as well, which is very important to overall senior health.
Some senior-friendly, low-impact exercises include elliptical machines, stationary bikes, yoga, pilates, stretching, walking and anything in the water. If you enjoy being in the water, swimming, water aerobics or even walking laps in a pool can all be great ways to get the joints moving without any pressure from outside forces.
In addition to exercising, it is important to always stretch your muscles, even on days when you aren’t working out. Stretch in the morning and before bed to keep you muscles loose and healthy, it can make them stronger so they can protect your joints and prevent injuries from happening. Stretching has also been shown to release some of the pressure on the joints.
Don’t Forget About Posture
Many people don’t realize the impact that their poor posture can have on their body, especially in today’s day and age when so many people, including seniors, spend so much time sitting at desks and looking down at phones and tablets. This type of posture can really do a number on your neck, spine and joints.
Standing and sitting up straight won’t just protect your neck, but it will protect all of your joints all the way down to your knees. Make sure to keep posture in mind while sitting, standing and while lifting and carrying even lightweight objects.
One of the best ways to naturally improve your posture is to work on your core. The stronger your core is, the better off your posture will be and proper core strength can give you the muscles you need to protect your joints. Don’t try to push yourself too hard, but add some simple core exercises into your workouts to start naturally maintaining better posture.
Maintain a Healthy Weight
It can be hard to maintain a slim figure as we age, but it is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle so that you can maintain a healthy weight. Beginning with low-impact exercises is a great way to start losing some pounds, but making other lifestyle changes as well is very important as your weight can have a very big impact on your joint pain.
Think about this, every pound of weight on your body adds several pounds of force to your joints. If you have about 25 pounds to lose that can be almost 100 extra pounds of force on your joints each and every day. This can really cause your joints to be uncomfortable and to deteriorate faster than they are supposed to.
Lose weight in a healthy manner and start feeling less strain and pressure on your joints. With less pressure on your joints, you can move easier, stay active longer and start experiencing less pain and stiffness whenever you move.
Keep Diet in Mind
Diet is so important to maintaining overall joint health, but unfortunately, it is something that many people overlook. A healthy, balanced diet will not only help you lose a few extra pounds so you can relieve some pressure from your joints, but it can also help improve overall joint health as well.
Make sure that your diet is full of fatty acids, Omega-3s and vitamin D. These nutrients can come from foods like salmon, avocados, cod, flax seeds, coconut oil and more. You can also take a supplement to make sure that you are getting enough of these nutrients as well.
Nuts are also an important food to eat if you want to improve joint health as they can really combat the inflammation that typically causes joint health. Plus, nuts are an easy snack and can be added to smoothies, oatmeal, cereals, breads and all types of foods. Some great nuts to try are almonds and walnuts, but any nut will typically do. Just make sure to watch the salt.
If you prefer supplements, consider vitamin C or pepper cream to reduce inflammation. Avocado and soy supplements can also help ease joint inflammation as well.
Joint pain doesn’t have to be something you just accept as part of aging. There are things that you can do in order to decrease the presence of joint pain in your life and make sure that your joints are as healthy and as mobile as you are.