Physical Therapy for Arthritis
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Physical therapy for arthritis can make a difference in people's lives, and keep their joints active for years to come. Watch more on how physical therapy can help.
Transcript: Can physical therapy help treat arthritis? Absolutely. This is great news for the 50 million Americans...
Can physical therapy help treat arthritis? Absolutely. This is great news for the 50 million Americans who suffer from some form of it-- half of whom feel like there's LITTLE they can do for their pain. There's a common myth that people with arthritis should skip exercise ALTOGETHER to avoid damage to bones and joints. This is FALSE. No matter how severe your condition, physical therapy can help reduce symptoms that cause pain. How? Physical therapy tackles the LONG-TERM complications of arthritis and joint pain...the most COMMON being joint stiffness and muscle loss. For many people this happens gradually over time because the joint pain makes them reluctant to be physically active. Ironically, this results in even more discomfort and makes moving around more challenging. Without treatment, even everyday activities can become difficult. A physical therapist's job is to show you how to safely do exercises and stretches to IMPROVE the range of motion in your joints and STRENGTHEN the surrounding muscles. This includes using tools like exercise bands, stability balls, and weights. Unlike, say, a personal trainer, physical therapists know how to work with diseases like arthritis. They understand that certain movements can be painful and can help you adapt exercises to give you the same benefit but without further injury to your body. A physical therapist can also teach you therapeutic massage techniques as well as the PROPER way to use heat and ice to relieve pain -- all of which, combined with strength-building exercises, can keep you active for years to come. Talk to your doctor to see if physical therapy is a good option for you.More »
Last Modified: 2013-06-11 | Tags »
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Are you reluctant to get the flu shots while you are taking medication for arthritis? Watch our video on arthritis and the flu for more information.
Transcript: If you have rheumatoid or psoriatic arthritis, you may be taking drugs you take to treat your disease...
If you have rheumatoid or psoriatic arthritis, you may be taking drugs you take to treat your disease that SUPPRESS your immune system, and THAT makes you more susceptible to the FLU, AND pneumonia. In order to protect youself, you should WASH your hands often, and try to avoid contact with sick people. In addition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that people with RA and PA get the flu vaccine YEARLY. Since the injection contains an INACTIVE strain of the flu, you CAN'T get sick from it. But, RA and PA patients should NOT get the INHALED vaccine, because that DOES contain a live strain of influenza. People taking immuno-suppressants might have a weaker response to the vaccine. But studies show that they're STILL capable of producing antibodies that will protect them from the virus. The TIMING of your flu vaccine might be especially important, depending on what drugs you're taking. CONSULT with your doctor. To learn more about joint pain complications, watch additional videos in this series.More »
Last Modified: 2013-12-16 | Tags »
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Our arthritis pain relief at home tips can help you manage the painful condition. Watch this to learn how.
Transcript: Sometimes, you can relieve arthritis pain without medication. Here are a few ways to feel better. While...
Sometimes, you can relieve arthritis pain without medication. Here are a few ways to feel better. While OA symptoms can be debilitating, don't abandon physical activity and exercise! Joint movement BENEFITS cartilage by bringing in oxygen and nutrients and REMOVING waste products. It may sound contradictory, but resting your joints ALL THE TIME will make them hurt WORSE. Of course, TOO MUCH activity will also worsen pain. So take a break from repetitive joint activity every hour. Applying heat and cold packs to the pained area helps. Heat is soothing, while cold numbs pain. Try out an over-the-counter arthritis rub. These creams work best on joints that are close to the skin's surface such as those in the hand, hip and ankle. Watch out, though - OVERUSING joint cream may worsen cartilage damage. If your OA is in your knees or hips, a cane or a splint can help support your joints and make walking less painful. Some arthritis patients believe that certain foods and spices will ease symptoms. Try eating more ginger and turmeric, as well as salmon, herring, walnuts, olive oil, carrots, oranges, mango and other fruits and vegetables. These foods contain certain nutrients which may promote joint health. And, healthy eating in general is a GREAT idea, since weight gain WORSENS arthritis in the hips and knees. While they may seem tempting, most gadgets and concoctions that claim to cure arthritis are nothing more than scams and old wives' tales. Ask your doctor for advice before trying any unconventional treatments. Check out additional videos in this series to learn more about joint pain.More »
Last Modified: 2013-05-17 | Tags »
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No, knuckle cracking and arthritis are not related. But that does not mean it's safe to crack your knuckles, as it could lead to other problems. Find out more in this video.
Transcript: Crack. Pop. Click. These sounds jump from the joints of those in the habit of cracking their knuckles....
Crack. Pop. Click. These sounds jump from the joints of those in the habit of cracking their knuckles. Depending on your point of view, knuckle-popping sounds disgusting or cool. But there's NO evidence that it inflames the joints or leads to arthritis. Located between two bones, the knuckles are bathed in synovial fluid, which lubricates the joints. Sometimes, a bubble of gas forms in this fluid, and when the knuckles are cracked, it breaks the adhesive seal in the joint, and we hear: Pop! The arthritis connection may be an old wives' tale, but cracking your knuckles CAN hurt your hand in other ways, and there's NO benefit to it. Instead, try bending and stretching your fingers a few times to relieve tightness. And keep in mind, that while cracking your knuckles may seem like an innocent, mindless habit, for the person next to you, it may be just as irritating as the sound of fingernails on a chalkboard.More »
Last Modified: 2013-08-13 | Tags »
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With medication and lifestyle changes, living with osteoarthritis can get easier. Watch this video to find out more about these doctor-approved recommendations.
Transcript: A host of powerful of nutrients have been proven to combat the inflammation that can lead to arthritis...
A host of powerful of nutrients have been proven to combat the inflammation that can lead to arthritis pain. For the best results, take 1500 MG of Glucosamine, 1200 MG of Chondroitin sulfate, and 510 MG of ginger a day. Each of these supplements is available at your local vitamin store. Another way to cut back on inflammation, is to make some selective dietary changes. By eating foods that discourage the body from becoming inflame, you can help reduce discomfort. A typical American diet is very high in processed sugars, salt and saturated fats. Food choices like this can lead to obesity and may results in serious inflammation. Starting an anti-inflammatory diet doesn't have to mean giving up delicious foods. Cold water fish like salmon and tuna, fresh fruits, whole grains, and dark leafy vegetables are all tasty choices. For best results avoid saturated Omega 6 fatty acids, which are in red meat and fast food. These foods may taste good now, but they really aren't worth arthritis pain later. A 15-minutes set of pilates and yoga exercises can also be extremely beneficial for people with arthritis. These gentle movements should be completed three times a week, both to help relieve existing discomfort and to prevent new pain from developing. Although there is currently no cure for arthritis, a number of options can help ease painful symptoms. For more information, check out my book "Arthritis RX: A Cutting Edge Program For Pain Free Life" and remember, if you think you may have arthritis, please see your doctor.More »
Last Modified: 2013-09-04 | Tags »
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You can still have joyful sex with joint pain. Follow along with this video to find out how.
Transcript: Luckily, it's easy to find new positions that put less strain on achy joints, so your sex life stays...
Luckily, it's easy to find new positions that put less strain on achy joints, so your sex life stays steamy! If movement causes you pain, ask your partner to provide most of the acrobatics. You may prefer a position that lets you move away if you suddenly experience joint discomfort. When a man has hip or knee problems, he can lie down on his back with pillows for support. His partner can then support her weight on her elbows and/or knees. When a woman has hip or knee pain, both of you can lie down on your sides, with a pillow between the woman's knees. The man should then enter from behind. The goal is to work together for your mutual pleasure and comfort. Learning what your partner enjoys will give you confidence that you can safely please your mate!More »
Last Modified: 2012-12-28 | Tags »
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Osteoarthritis often shows early warning signs. Learn to spot the signs, before it gets into a degenerative phase.
Transcript: Osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage that protects bones begins to wear away. The raw area that results...
Osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage that protects bones begins to wear away. The raw area that results causes bone to rub painfully on bone. Osteoarthritis has distinct signs including the narrowing the joint, boney spurs at the joint's margin and a one-sided distribution of joint irregularities. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative disease, which means it becomes steadily worse overtime. People who are overweight, put extra pressure on their hips, knees and other weight bearing joints. This can contribute to the wearing away of vital joint cartilage. Other causes of osteoarthritis include sport related injuries and physical trauma like car accidents. Occupations that depend on heavy physical labor are another common culprit. Osteoarthritis is more common in older women due to shortage of estrogen. Osteoarthritis usually occurs on only one side of the body. For example, a sufferer may experience pain in their right hip but not their left. While there is no cure for osteoarthritis, there are treatments that can help.More »
Last Modified: 2014-01-17 | Tags »
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Understanding arthritis can help you manage the painful condition. Watch this video to learn more.
Transcript: More than 66 million Americans suffer from some form of arthritis, and many don't even know why they're...
More than 66 million Americans suffer from some form of arthritis, and many don't even know why they're experiencing pain. So what exactly is arthritis? Arthritis is a disease characterized by pain, swelling or stiffness in the joints. There are more than 100 types of this disease, which is one of the oldest and most chronic in the world. To understand how arthritis works, let's take a look at the musculoskeletal system. The musculoskeletal system is made up of 650 muscles and 206 bones which support the body. The places where bones meet and movement takes place are called joints. Arthritis arises when, for various reasons, the joints stop working properly. The different types of arthritis are classified by the way in which the joint fails to function. Two of the most common joint failures result in rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage that protects bones begins to wear away. The raw area that results causes bone to rub painfully on bone. Rheumatoid arthritis, on the other hand, happens when the body's immune system mistakenly attacks its own tissue, resulting in joint inflammation. Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic disease. This means it is characterized by long periods where a sufferer feels fine, interspersed with painful flare-ups. In contrast, osteoarthritis is a degenerative disease, which means it becomes steadily worse over time. Therefore, osteoarthritis tends to be more common among the elderly. The disease also occurs more frequently in women. The definitive cause of rheumatoid arthritis remains unknown, although hereditary factors are suspected. Osteoarthritis, though, can be caused by a variety of factors, including obesity. People who are overweight put extra pressure on their hips, knees and other weight-bearing joints. This can contribute to the wearing away of vital joint cartilage. Other causes of osteoarthritis include sports-related injuries and physical trauma, like car accidents. Occupations that depend on heavy physical labor are another common culprit. Osteoarthritis Is more common in older women due to a shortage estrogen. No matter the classification, arthritis usually causes pain or swelling in the joints. Another frequently reported symptom is stiffness in the joints following after periods of inactivity, or in the morning. People who have rheumatoid arthritis may also feel generally ill and experience flu-like symptoms such as fatigue, fever and lack of appetite. Usually, the pain of rheumatoid arthritis is symmetrical, meaning that joints are inflamed on both sides of the body. Osteoarthritis, on the other hand, usually occurs on only one side of the body. For example, a sufferer may experience pain in their right hip, but not their left. Although there is currently no cure for arthritis, a number of options can help ease painful symptoms. For more information, check out my book, Arthritis RX, or the other videos in this series. And remember, if you think you may have arthritis, please see a doctor immediately.More »
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Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic autoimmune disorder that affects joints and can occur at any age. Watch this video to learn more about rheumatoid arthritis.
Transcript: Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic disease, which means it is characterized by long periods where a sufferer...
Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic disease, which means it is characterized by long periods where a sufferer feels fine and enters sports with painful flair ups. Rheumatoid arthritis happens when the body's immune system mistakenly attacks its own tissue, resulting in joint inflammation. A person with this type of arthritis may experience a loss of bone calcium and joint irregularities on both sides of the body. The majority of people with rheumatoid arthritis will have rheumatoid factor antibodies or RF antibodies in their blood. Your rheumatologist may choose to determine the type of arthritis you have with a joint aspiration procedure, if necessary. This type of arthritis can occur at any age. People who have rheumatoid arthritis may also feel generally ill and experience flu like symptoms such as fatigue, fever, and lack of appetite. Usually the pain of rheumatoid arthritis is symmetrical, meaning that joints are inflamed on both sides of the body. As a general rule, apply heat in the morning and before physical activity. Switch to ice in the evening and after exercise. If you are experiencing pain, swelling or stiffness in any of your joints, make an appointment to see your physician. Doing so is the first step on the road to better health. For more on arthritis, check out my book "Arthritis RX"More »
Last Modified: 2013-08-29 | Tags »
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Arthritis can be painful, but certain lifestyle changes can go a long way toward preventing arthritis pain. Learn what you can do, here.
Transcript: Osteoarthritis affects 25 million Americans, but there's good news for people suffering from the condition....
Osteoarthritis affects 25 million Americans, but there's good news for people suffering from the condition. A few lifestyle changes can help people with arthritis live with significantly less pain. For people with osteoarthritis, chronic pain can be a part of everyday life. While there is no cure for osteoarthritis, there are treatments that can help. In my book, Arthritis RX, I discuss a set of guidelines which can reduce arthritis pain by up to 43 percent. There are three elements to the program. The first component is a basic exercise regimen that strengthens the body's core muscles. The second part recommends daily nutritional supplements to ease inflammation. Finally, the plan illustrates the basics of an anti-inflammatory diet. A host of powerful nutrients have been proven to combat the inflammation that can lead to arthritis pain. You can get the benefit of these nutrients by supplementing your diet with a mixture of glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate and ginger. For the best results, take 1,500 milligrams of glucosamine, 1,200 milligrams of chondroitin sulfate and 510 milligrams of ginger a day. Each of these supplements is available at your local vitamin store. Another way to cut back on inflammation is to make some selective dietary changes. By eating foods that discourage the body from becoming inflamed, you can help reduce discomfort. The typical American diet is very high in processed sugars, salt and saturated fats. Food choices like this can lead to obesity and may result in serious inflammation! Starting an anti-inflammatory diet doesn't have to mean giving up delicious foods. Cold-water fish like salmon and tuna, fresh fruits, whole grains and dark, leafy vegetables are all tasty choices. For best results, avoid saturated omega-6 fatty acids, which are in red meat, and fast food. These foods may taste good now, but they really aren't worth the arthritis pain later! A 15-minute set of pilates and yoga exercises can also be extremely beneficial for people with arthritis. These gentle movements should be completed three times a week both help relieve existing discomfort, and to prevent new pain from developing. Let's look at an example of a yoga movement you can try at home. This is a warm-up stretch called Sun Salutation Lying Down. Lie flat on your back, with legs straight and arms at your sides, and look up at the ceiling. Inhale as you sweep your arms out to point above your head. As you exhale, sweep your arms back down. Even though osteoarthritis is currently without a cure, every person living with the condition can make the choice to engage in positive life changes like these, which will alleviate pain and discourage it from returning. Check out other content on this site for examples of exercises you can do to help ease your arthritis pain.And remember, never begin an exercise, diet or nutritional supplement program without first talking to a health care professional.More »
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Are you suffering from arthritis? This condition can be extremely painful but with the help of some treatments you can manage it. Learn about arthritis pain treatment in this video.
Transcript: The pain suffered by those with arthritis can be debilitating. Watch this video to learn about non-invasive...
The pain suffered by those with arthritis can be debilitating. Watch this video to learn about non-invasive methods for treating arthritis pain. There is no cure for the chronic pain that is characteristic of arthritis, but there is good news for the 30 percent of Americans who suffer from the disease. There are a number of treatments available that can help to minimize joint discomfort immediately. A simple way to relieve chronic arthritis pain is with over-the-counter-medications. Some commonly available OTCs for pain include aspirin, Advil, Tylenol and Aleve. Because Ibuprofen, the active ingredient in Advil, combines pain-relief with anti-inflammatory action, it may be the preferred choice for arthritis pain. Anti-inf should be used sparingly to avoid complications like stomach ulcers and kidney failure particularly in diabetics. Your best bet is liquid gel capsules, which absorb more readily into the blood stream. Another great way to soothe aching joints is to apply a liniment like Tiger Balm or BENGAY to painful areas. If you can, have someone else apply the cream for you-a gentle rubdown can be soothing as well! Many people who suffer from arthritis pain find that a heat and ice treatment works wonders. To try this therapy at home, begin by applying ice to new pain or a recent injury. Get the maximum benefit from ice by applying it to painful areas two or three times a day for fifteen minutes at a time. Repeat this treatment for twenty-four hours, always removing ice after fifteen minutes, as it reaches maximum efficacy at that point. Unlike ice, warmth can continue to provide benefit over time. After twenty-four hours of ice treatments, apply moist heat to an injury, either in the shower or with a heating pad, for up to thirty minutes. After forty-eight hours, begin using heat and ice in sequence. As a general rule, apply heat in the morning and before physical activity. Switch to ice in the evening and after exercise. A great, natural way to dull arthritis pain is by focusing on breathing in a slow, controlled rhythm. Start by inhaling deeply through your nose, holding your breath for three counts. Exhale fully by contracting your stomach. Continue breathing this way for at least three minutes. It may seem simple, but proper breathing can proved fast, effective pain relief. That's because controlled breath shifts the mind's attention away from pain and the body's response to it. You can increase the benefit of your breathing exercises by engaging in visual imagery. Try imagining your breath as a wave of healing light. Envision the light flowing into your head and down your spine, and then outward to the rest of your body. This technique will calm you and help you focus on healing. Although there is currently no cure for arthritis, these tips can make a world of difference in the chronic pain caused by the disease. For information on making the healthy changes that can lead to a pain-free life, check out other videos in this series.More »
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Depression is not a natural part of getting older. Depression in the elderly may seem more common due to certain life events, but its symptoms appear very differently than in other groups of people. Learn more in this video.
Transcript: For as many as one in five Americans over 65, clinical depression is a daily struggle. Some people mistakenly...
For as many as one in five Americans over 65, clinical depression is a daily struggle. Some people mistakenly believe that being depressed, lonely or sad are "normal" parts of getting older. And while it IS true that the loss of a loved one, health problems, and life changes often DO lead to feelings of sadness, recurrent, debilitating blue moods are NOT normal or healthy in the elderly. In seeking to understand the high rates of depression among older adults doctors find that imbalances in neurotransmitters, our cells' communication system, may be to blame. The elderly are ALSO more likely to experience the loss of a spouse, close friends, and other members of their support system. And they may deal with retirement and other stressful life changes as well as chronic health issues, like arthritis, Alzheimer's disease, and Parkinson's disease. Whatever the reason for the condition, older people tend to display symptoms of depression differently. Often, they complain more about the PHYSICAL effects of the condition, like aches and pains, rather than the emotional ones or they may complain of problems with memory or concentration. And depression tends to last longer in older adults than in young people. Because it can be so hard to separate depression from other conditions in older individuals and because of the stigma attached to mental illness among this demographic only 10 percent of older people with depression receive treatment. This is disheartening because the elderly, particularly men, are MUCH more likely to commit suicide. In fact, people 65 and older account for fully 16 percent of suicide deaths, despite the fact that they make up just 12 percent of the U.S. population. On a positive note, treatment for elderly people with clinical depression is VERY effective. In fact, with combined treatment of psychotherapy and antidepressant medication the National Institute of Mental Health attests that 80 percent of elderly people with depression recover! Knowing this, it's VITAL to seek help if you or an elderly loved one is experiencing symptoms of clinical depression!More »
Last Modified: 2013-10-01 | Tags »
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