Adult humans have 206 bones, while the skeleton of an infant contains 350 (the bones fuse together as you grow). More than half of your 206 bones are found in your hands and feet. No wonder joint care and pain relief is such big business. Imagine 206 bones moving together hour after hour, month after month and year after year. Cartilage, muscles, ligaments, and synovial membranes work together to protect and support the joints and allow you to execute various movements.
Without proper care, your joints can easily wear out and become inflamed and painful, a condition called arthritis. Should that happen, what can you do to relieve joint pain and improve your condition? Here are a few simple tips:
Use pure essential oils combined with mixing oil to massage the area which hurts. Lavender, for instance, has healing properties, while eucalyptus is soothing. Stroke in the direction of your heart.
As soon as you feel the pain beginning, you can apply ice packs hourly for 15 minutes each time. The following day, if the pain persists, you may continue with the ice packs for 15 minutes each time but reduce the hourly applications. Try doing this no more than half-a-dozen times that day.
Aromatic Warm Baths
Fill your bathtub with warm water and put in several drops of pure essential oils, like eucalyptus and lavender. Enjoy a nice, relaxing soak which will also help you to destress as well as relieve the pain.
Low-impact activity such as walking, swimming and biking helps to build muscle around the joints to support them. Do this daily and you will probably lose weight too, which will reduce the burden and stress on your skeleton and joints, especially weight-bearing joints like the knees, feet, back and hips. My knees used to hurt terribly because of worn-out and inflamed joints. The pain was so excruciating that I couldn’t even get out of bed in the mornings. Going for regular walks helped me lose excess weight as well as build up the muscles around my joints. I’ve been pain-free for years now.
Nourish Your Joints and Connective Tissue
With age, glucosamine levels in the body declines. Glucosamine helps to keep cartilage and joints healthy. When the cartilage wears down, osteoarthritis results. Nutrients to support normal levels of synovial fluids, which help to lubricate the joints and tendons, are vital for joint health too. Feeding your body with antioxidants and nutrients which help to support your immune system also help to keep joint deterioration and pain at bay. Give your body the nutrients it needs for musculoskeletal health and healthy joints.
Are you wearing footwear which will support your joints and reduce impact when you walk? Is having the wrong gait causing your joints to wear out? The right footwear can help you correct your posture as well as the way you walk. Throw away shoes and sandals which don’t’ meet these criteria.
Watch Your Posture
Good posture helps to protect your back, legs and feet. Keep your spine straight and avoid lopsided positions.
Invest In Ergonomically-Designed Seating
Do you have at least one good ergonomically-designed chair at home or at work which supports your body correctly? Chairs which don’t support critical areas like your spine, legs, neck and arms can strain your joints and cause your body to ache. Low seats and chairs without armrests should also be avoided, as you may have to strain to get in and out of them.
Avoid Sudden Movements and Straining
Sudden twists and turns, stretching, lifting, jerking, pushing, pulling, bending, and reaching can hurt your joints and muscles. Keep your movements gentle, fluid and steady. Float like a butterfly.
Distribute The Pressure
Carrying a heavy plate? Use both your hands – palms and fingers- to distribute the weight. Avoid putting too much load on any single joint. Let the stronger joints and muscles of your body, like the shoulders and the arms, support a heavy load, rather than just trying to carry it with your hands. If you can sling it over your shoulders, please do so. In an episode of reality TV show, “The Amazing Race”. contestants (two per team) had to carry a full-grown pig on a pole for 200 yards. Those who tried to do so by using their hands only kept falling and dropping the carcass. On the other hand, one team – which included the oldest contestant – who put the pole across their shoulders managed to complete the task faster and with less effort.
Rest and Sleep
Healing is delayed when your body doesn’t get sufficient quality rest and sleep. Put your poor, aching feet up and give yourself a break!
Posted: June 16th, 2009 under Antioxidants, Exercise & Fitness, Immune System Health, Joint Health, Rest & Sleep.