Healthy Living

When joints hurt! Correct Posture is an important issue!!

When joints hurt! Correct Posture is an important issue!!

 

 It’s not just discomforting; it’s dispiriting. Joint injuries and ailments threaten our ability to do the things we want, go where we wish, even to stay as independent as we hoped. Standing or walking in a defective posture can cause deformity and disability.

Standing in Correct posture

It is an important issue. Most people young or old do not stand properly and consequently do not breathe properly. Also due to standing in inappropriate posture tummy protruding is common even among the youth. If the problem is slouching of your chest and back the approach should be postural correction and not targeting obesity or change in the nutrition? Crucial steps are i) pulling the tummy inwards/backwards ii) straightening the back iii) lifting the chest iv) neutral position of the neck v) opening the shoulders fully vi) Contracting the muscles of the buttocks vii) Breathing in to the full so that tummy appears full viii) breathing out fully from the chest-appears to contract. If chest does not open fully the lungs do not expand enough and availability of oxygen is less by 20-40%. This also entails internal rotation of shoulders and flexing of thorax.  This leads to stiffening and shortening of muscles, reducing height and affecting gait.

  Stretching may help

Does it hurt to turn your head to see cars in the lane behind you? Do your knees and back feel stiff and achy? Is it difficult to reach the cereal on the top shelf or bend down to pick up something off the floor? Would you like to find an easy way to become more flexible, ease pain, improve your balance, and prevent falls that can threaten your independence? Stretching may help! Strengthening your core muscles is one of the best ways to ensure you stay active and independent as you age. That’s because your core muscles are critical for nearly every move you make, from bending and reaching to twisting and standing.

Stretching your muscles fixes the shortening that occurs with disuse and extends muscles to their full length. The more you stretch the muscles, the longer and more flexible they'll become. That will help increase your range of motion, ward off pain, reduce the risk for injury, and improve your posture. Warm up the muscles first to get blood and oxygen to them and make them more pliable. You can do this with exercise (take a brisk walk, pumping your arms, or go for a swim). Or you can try a few minutes of dynamic stretching — repeatedly moving a joint through its available range of motion, without holding a position. If you're really stiff, stretch daily. If you're already flexible, it's fine to stretch every other day. But avoid stretching for too long or too vigorously: back off quickly if you start to feel pain.

Osteoporosis is universal as you age!

After age 30 you start losing bone density? In fact, women will lose up to 20 percent of bone mineral density in the five to seven years after menopause. And by age 65 men and women lose bone density at the same rate. Sadly loss of bone mass often ends up causing life-changing fractures. The good news is you don’t have to wait for a fall or break to fight the disease. Many people have no idea that they have been losing bone mass for years until — suddenly and without warning — a twist, a bend, or an unexpected jolt or fall leads to a painful fracture in the hip, spine or wrist.

Vitamin D is for strong bones, muscles as well as mind!

 Vitamin D has a great role in maintenance of bones, muscles and other tissues. The sun helps synthesize vitamin D in the skin — promoting the growth of strong muscles and bones, lowering blood pressure, easing fibromyalgia pain, and slowing the progression of multiple sclerosis. Symptoms of vitamin D deficiency include bone pain, muscle weakness, increased blood pressure, and depression. Moderate and severe vitamin D deficiency in older adults is associated with a doubled risk for some forms of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease. Dementia involves a decline in thinking, behavior, and memory that negatively affects daily life. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia, accounting for as many as 80 percent of dementia cases. There is a strong co-relation of low vitamin D levels and prostate cancer and poor sexual health in men. Also low vitamin D levels are a potential culprit for health problems related to heart disease such as atherosclerosis, hypertension, diabetes, and stroke. Most people need 600 international units (IU) of vitamin D daily, which you can get from sun exposure and diet-like fortified dairy, egg yolk, fish etc.

Hip pains are not uncommon!

They complain of hip pain, but what they may mean is that they have pain in the side of the upper thigh or upper buttock, or they may be experiencing lower back pain. Osteo-arthritis of the joint, fracture, tendonitis or bursitis, Hernias, back or gynecological issues may mimic pain in the hip.The decision to have a joint replacement is based on the amount of damage to the joint, your symptoms, and your overall level of disability. Here are some signs that it may be time to consider hip replacement:

  • X-rays show advanced arthritis or other damage.
  • The joint is visibly deformed, bowing inward or outward.
  • You have significant pain daily.
  • Pain keeps you awake at night despite the use of medications.
  • Pain and swelling don't decrease with rest and medication.
  • Pain medications are causing severe side effects.

Hip replacement might be too risky if you have any of the following conditions:

  • an active infection in the hip or elsewhere in the body
  • a significant medical condition, including recent heart attack, ongoing chest pain from heart disease, or heart failure
  • poor circulation that could interfere with healing
  • severely damaged or nonworking hip muscles or ligaments
  • damaged nerves in the hip
  • neuromuscular disease such as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, or stroke
  • an allergy to materials used to make artificial joints.

Knee pain

It is a common complaint that affects people of all ages. Knee pain may be the result of an injury, such as a ruptured ligament or torn cartilage. Medical conditions — including arthritis, gout and infections — also can cause knee pain. ... In some cases, however, your knee may require surgical repair. Knee pain can be caused by a sudden injury, an overuse injury, or by an underlying condition, such as arthritis. Treatment will vary depending on the cause. Symptoms of knee injury can include pain, swelling, and stiffness. People who are overweight or obese are at a greater risk for knee problems. For every pound that you are overweight, your knee must absorb an extra 4 poundsTrusted Source of pressure when you walk, run, or climb stairs.

total knee replacement is a surgical procedure whereby the diseased knee joint is replaced with artificial material. The knee is a hinge joint that provides motion at the point where the thigh meets the lower leg. The thighbone (or femur) abuts the large bone of the lower leg (tibia) at the knee joint. It is most commonly performed for osteoarthritis, and also for other knee diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis.

When Shoulder Joint hurts!

The shoulder is the body's most complicated joint. It's where the ends of the collarbone, upper arm bone, and shoulder blade meet. And it's prone to arthritis (a wearing away of the cartilage between the bones), as well as tears or tendinitis (inflammation) in the rotator cuff — the group of tendons that helps you raise and rotate your arm. Shoulder pain can keep you from being able to raise your arms to get dressed, or reach up to a cupboard or out to a door.
But an easy way to stave off shoulder problems is to regularly stretch the muscles that support the joints. The muscles need to be long and flexible to stay healthy. You're more vulnerable to injury when your shoulder muscles are tight and restricted. The muscles need to be long and flexible to stay healthy. You're more vulnerable to injury when your shoulder muscles are tight and restricted,

Stand up straight facing a wall. Extend your right arm with your elbow soft (not locked) and place your hand on the wall at shoulder height. Slowly walk your fingers upward, stepping in toward the wall as your hand climbs higher. Stop when you feel mild tension in your shoulder. Hold 10 to 30 seconds. Slowly walk your fingers back down the wall and return to the starting position. Repeat three to four times. Switch arms and repeat.

Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Put your left hand on your right shoulder. Cup your left elbow with your right hand. Roll your shoulders down and back as you gently pull your left elbow across your chest. Hold 10 to 30 seconds. Return to the starting position. Repeat three to four times, then repeat on the other side.

Stand up straight with your feet hip-width apart and your hands by your sides. Place the back of your right hand against the small of your back at your waist. Your fingers should be pointing up. Slowly slide your right hand farther up your back as high as you can. Hold 10 to 30 seconds. Repeat three to four times, and then repeat with left hand.

The combination of stretching and strengthening will act as a preventive approach to keep even a complicated joint ready for action.

Foot pains

Pain is a symptom common to many foot conditions, and pain medications can often help relieve foot pain. You also can try other approaches, either before resorting to pain relievers or in conjunction with them. For example, you can try an ice pack or warm feet soak before reaching for the pain pills.

In general, if your skin feels warm to the touch (indicating that your foot is inflamed and possibly swollen), apply ice. Don't apply warmth to an inflamed area because it will only increase the blood flow and make the inflammation worse.

Foot massage

When you think of massage, you may think of a neck or back rub. But your feet also benefit from a regular rubdown. And you may even be able to do it yourself. Massage improves circulation, stimulates muscles, reduces tension, and often alleviates pain. It also provides a time for you to examine your feet, giving you the chance to notice a problem before it gets worse. To do a massage:

  • Sit in a comfortable chair. Bend your left leg and rest your left foot gently on your right thigh.
  • Pour some skin lotion or oil into your hand. Rub it gently into your foot and massage your whole foot — toes, arch, and heel.
  • Do a deeper massage. Press the knuckles of your right hand into your left foot. Knead your foot as you would bread. Or work the skin and muscles by holding a foot with both hands and pressing your thumbs into the skin.
  • Using your hands, pull the toes back and forth or apart. This gently stretches the muscles underneath.
  • Repeat on the other foot.

 

 

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