You should definitely avoid smoke from cigarettes, and if you are someone who smokes, quit. Even though smoking may seem to help inflammation, this is an illusion. It constricts blood vessels and reduces blood flow causing temporary numbness. It also causes joint damage and will result in your arthritis progressing more rapidly than in a non-smoker.
Take your time with major clean up tasks if arthritis is a part of your life. Major cleaning tasks, like mopping and changing bed sheets, put a strain on your body. They involve the use, and sometimes over use, of several different muscles and joints. Take a break when you can or better yet, ask for help. You don’t have to do it all in one day.
If you are a woman who suffers from arthritis in your back, you may want to think about changing what bras you wear. Believe it or not, certain bras can make your arthritis worse by putting pressure on your back. There are actually bras that are made just for women with arthritis.
Take the time to have your family educated about your rheumatoid arthritis and the different challenges that will occur while you live with this condition. There are classes available through The Arthritis Foundation, and there are many books available that can be used to teach your family about the condition.
Walking is an activity that helps arthritis in many aspects. Not only does it help your body to release any tensions it may have, but it also helps by stretching out weak joints and muscles. If it is possible, try to talk a 20 to 30 minute walk every day.
Eat plenty of Omega-3 fatty acids to help combat inflammation. Recent studies have shown that Omega-3 fatty acids can help to reduce inflammation for arthritis sufferers. Food sources that are high in Omega-3s include fish, walnuts, and flaxseed. Better yet, try adding cod liver oil to your diet. Not only is it rich in Omega-3s, but it also has been shown to help significantly reduce arthritis pain.
Use musical therapy in order to ease the pain when you are suffering from severe inflammation. While it isn’t a permanent fix and is far from medication and serious pain relief, there are studies that have proven classical music and other soothing types of music to be therapeutic when treating pain from arthritis.
Focus on something else. When you are in pain, your mind is solely interested in that fact. If you can find something to draw your attention away from it, you will likely notice that your pain is actually lessening or possibly even disappearing. A distracting and focused hobby can be a great technique to use for this.
Many people have found heat and cold treatments to be very good therapy for arthritis. Try using an old pure cotton sock filled with dry rice as an easy, mess-free method of applying either heat or cold. Put it in a plastic bag in the freezer to prepare for cold therapy. Pop it in the microwave briefly to prepare it for heat therapy.