Once you’ve left the spry days of your youth behind, aches and pains become a normal part of life. There are a number of reasons you may experience joint pain. For instance, things you do every day—like walking, running, or even chores—can eventually cause the cartilage around your joints to break down. Arthritis is another common cause of pain for seniors, and can make it harder to perform everyday tasks. This is why it’s important to take preventive measures to protect your joints. Here are some tips to keep in mind.
Modify activities to protect your joints.
Being active is a great way to keep your joints stretched and limber. However, certain activities are harder on your body than others. Take care to use padding if you decide to pick up ice skating or rollerblading, since falling can cause joint damage. Additionally, try giving your knees a soft place to rest if you kneel or crouch often during activities like yard work. If you do a lot of high-impact activities like running and lifting and experience joint pain, you might also want to try switching to low-impact activities.
( And don’t forget to warm up first.)
Stretching cold isn’t as good for your muscles, but stretching is still important for seniors. In fact, stretching even 3 times a week can improve balance and flexibility. Before you start, consider taking a short walk to generate some heat and loosen up those joints and tendons. If you
Take a supplement that supports joint and bone health.
Studies show that vitamins and supplements may reduce joint pain. Some studies have found that taking supplements that contain collagen can have a number of positive effects. Research indicates that not only can collagen possibly reduce arthritis pain, but it may also be able to help wounds heal faster and prevent muscle wasting. These effects were most pronounced in seniors, so you may want to consider a joint supplement with collagen.
Sit up straight.
Slouching is normal, especially now that working at a computer desk is more popular than ever. Unfortunately, though, slouching can strain the spinal and cervical joints. Make an active effort to sit up straight. This can help reduce stress on the spine and keep joints healthier.
Whether you feel pain or not, it’s important to listen to your body. For example, if you feel pain after 20 or so minutes of walking, this is a sign that it’s time to take a break. While the methods above may help you, none are a one-size-fits-all solution. You should always check with your doctor before beginning a new exercise routine. Your doctor will be able to advise you best!