5 Habits You Can Change That Will Help Your Knee Arthritis

5 Habits You Should Adopt To Help Your Knee Arthritis

Knee arthritis is common, affecting millions of Americans. Arthritis is not one specific disease, but refers to the deterioration or degeneration of cartilage in the joints. Although different types of arthritis can affect individuals at any age, osteoarthritis, the most common type, mostly affects those over 50 years old. 

Osteoarthritis usually develops over time from use of the joints and from the natural degeneration that accompanies aging. Some of the symptoms of knee arthritis are pain, difficulty walking, cracking or grinding noises when you move, and stiffness. If you’ve started to experience these issues, you should adjust your habits to prevent further deterioration of the joint. Here are some habits you should adopt to prevent further debilities due to arthritis. 

1. Eat an Anti-Inflammatory Diet 

It goes without saying that the food you eat has a big impact on your overall well-being. But did you know that it can have an impact on the severity of your arthritis symptoms? Various nutrients, including vitamin C and omega-3 fatty acids, can help reduce pain and ease the symptoms of arthritis. You should favor foods like fruits, vegetables, and fish. Whole grains should also be included in your diet, and sugary, processed foods like fast-food burgers, fries, chips, and candy should be avoided. This is because red meats and sugary and processed foods can actually cause joint inflammation.

When adapting to a new diet, focusing on single nutrients isn’t necessary. Instead, you should eat many healthy foods every day and add a variety of foods to your diet. You can also supplement your diet with a multivitamin to make sure you are getting the nutrients you need. If you’re not sure how to start, speak to your joint specialist. At Tchejeyan Orthopaedics, you can also book a telemed appointment, which is easy and convenient.

2. Select Correct Footwear

Good shoes can reduce your symptoms and slow the progression of arthritis in the knees. Wear low-heeled, supportive, and cushioned footwear that doesn’t put extra pressure on your knees. In some cases, orthotic shoe inserts can help to distribute your weight more evenly and correct postural problems like over- or underpronation, which can aggravate arthritis. Dr. Tchejeyan at TJN Ortho will even create custom-made orthotics for you.

3. Exercise Regularly 

You’ll feel less pain and stiffness if the muscles, tendons, and ligaments around your knees are strong. Strong muscles can take some of the pressure off of your knees in supporting the weight of your body. In addition, your joints rely on synovial fluid to remain lubricated. Although the synovial membrane produces less synovial fluid as you age, exercise helps the synovial fluid move around. When your joints are well-lubricated, you are less likely to experience inflammation in those joints, so gentle exercise will actually reduce inflammation. Moderate exercise for at least 2-3 hours a week is a good level to maintain joint health without overtaxing the knees. Choose low-impact options like cycling, swimming, yoga, Pilates, or exercise walking. You could also work with a physio, who will get you motivated and teach you some good knee exercises. 

4. Lose Weight

Sometimes, doctors cannot offer certain treatments to patients with knee problems if they are too overweight, because their chance of getting injured or developing arthritis again is extremely high. Remember, your knees support almost all of your body weight, which means that being overweight puts enormous stress on the knee. When you walk, you put about 1.5 times your body weight on your knee joint, and if you climb stairs, it can put 3 to 4 times your body weight on your knee joints. Consequently, if you are overweight and have arthritis, losing weight should be a priority. Eat a healthy diet, get enough exercise, and, if necessary, work with a professional such as a nutritionist or a personal trainer to help you meet your weight-loss goals.

5. See Your Doctor Regularly 

If you have arthritis in the knee, you should see your doctor once or twice a year to check whether your condition has worsened. Another reason to visit the doctor is if your symptoms have changed. A change may indicate that you may have other damage to your joint that requires medical attention. Your doctor can order an MRI or other imaging test, and find out whether you may need further intervention, such as arthroscopic surgery or MAKO joint repair.
Unfortunately, arthritis commonly comes with aging, but there are things you can do to ease the pain and other symptoms that come with arthritis. Contact us today at TJN Ortho in Thousand Oaks, California, to book your appointment with Dr. Tchejeyan. He can diagnose your problem and help you to find the best treatment possible.