Arthritis: What can you do to reduce your risk?

There are more than 100 types of arthritis and related conditions linked to age, gender and family history. Although you can’t always prevent arthritis, there are things you can do to reduce the risk.

Here are some healthy habits from the home doctor experts at House Call Doctor, that you can practise to reduce the risk of developing painful joints as you get older.

  1. Exercise

Exercising is a great way to take the stress of excess weight off your joints. It can also strengthen the muscles around the joints, stabilising and protecting them from added wear and tear. Try aerobic activities such as swimming or walking, along with strengthening exercises.

  1. Control your weight

Being overweight or obese can take a toll on joints, such as your ankles and knees. Therefore, it is important to maintain a healthy weight through exercise and diet, to relieve stress from your joints.

  1. Protect your joints

Using the right techniques to complete everyday tasks is important. Be mindful of straining your joints when sitting, working and lifting. Always lift with your knees and hips, not your back, and carry items close to your body so you don’t put unnecessary strain on your wrists.

  1. Visit your GP

If you notice any signs of developing arthritis, visit your doctor as soon as possible. Joint damage from arthritis is usually progressive – therefore the longer you wait to seek advice and treatment, the worse it can get. Your doctor may be able to suggest treatments or lifestyle changes that can slow the progress.

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