Joints in Working Order

5 Ways to Keep Your Joints in Working Order As You Age

Aging is an inevitable process that happens to everyone. As we age, our bodies change, and we may not be able to do the things we used to do. Parts of the body may feel stiff, restricting our range of motion.

When they become stiff, doing your everyday tasks can be more challenging and painful, like walking, climbing stairs, or reaching for something. That's why our joints deserve some extra attention and care as we age.

While we can't stop the aging process, there are things we can do to help keep our joints healthy and working correctly. Here are five ways.

Regular Exercise

One of the best ways to keep your joints healthy as you age is to stay physically active. There's a saying that "use it or lose it," and it's especially true for your joints.

When you don't use them, the muscles around them can weaken, and the tissues that cushion them can break down. And this can lead to pain, stiffness, and loss of mobility.

Regular exercise may seem counterintuitive when your joints are already hurting. But inactivity can make joint pain worse. So even if it's tough to get started, you're likely to feel better once you do. And the benefits aren't just physical—regular exercise can also help improve your mood and reduce stress.

Seniors should remember to wear their smartwatches with medical alert capabilities when they exercise.

Consider low-impact activities like walking, swimming, and Tai Chi. These forms of exercise can help improve your range of motion and flexibility, build up the muscles that support your joints, and reduce pain. Motion is lotion for your joints. So get moving!

Take Multivitamins

Another way for older people to boost joint health is to take multivitamins. Why? Because as we age, our bodies become less efficient at extracting nutrients from the foods we eat.

Multivitamins can help bridge that gap and ensure that our joints get the necessary nutrients to stay healthy and strong. But of course, be sure to talk to your doctor because there are multivitamins for women and for men. Also, they can help you figure out what nutrients you might be deficient in and recommend the best way to get them.

Stay Hydrated

If you're not adequately hydrated, your body can't function at its best. It will siphon water from other body parts, including the cartilage. The cartilage is about 80% water, and if it dries out, it can lead to joint pain.

With that said, it's crucial to stay hydrated. The recommended amount of water per day is eight-ounce glasses. But that's just a general guideline, and you might need more or less depending on your activity level, the climate you live in, and other factors.

If you're not sure how much water you should be drinking, there are a few signs to look for that can indicate dehydration. These include:

  • Feeling thirsty
  • Having a dry mouth
  • Feeling tired
  • Having decreased urine output
  • Dark urine

If you're experiencing these symptoms, drinking more water is essential. As always, consult with your doctor if you have any concerns about your health.

Maintain A Healthy Weight

Extra weight puts stress on joints, especially the hips and knees. Why? When carrying around extra weight, your joints have to work harder. As a result, they have to support more weight, leading to pain and inflammation.

Another thing, excess weight can change the way you walk and move. For example, you might start to favor one side, which can put uneven stress on your hips and knees and lead to pain.

So, to avoid such problems, it's essential to try to maintain a healthy weight. If you are carrying extra weight, losing even a few pounds can make a difference in how your joints feel.

Follow An Anti-Inflammatory Diet

Reducing inflammation is key to improving overall joint health. Inflammation is the root cause of joint pain and stiffness. When you have inflammation, your body's natural response is to protect the area by forming a barrier around the joint. And this can lead to further damage and pain. Why? Because the barrier limits your range of motion and puts extra pressure on the joint.

One way to reduce inflammation is to eat an anti-inflammatory diet. It involves eating foods low in sugar, saturated fat, and processed foods.

Foods like salmon, berries, broccoli, and almonds are great for reducing inflammation. Also, ensure to get plenty of omega-three fatty acids, as they help decrease inflammation.

Takeaway

It's essential to protect your joints as you get older to maintain mobility and independence. Exercising regularly, eating a healthy diet, and staying hydrated are simple yet effective ways to care for your joints.

If you're struggling with joint pain, talk to your doctor about possible treatments, such as anti-inflammatory medication or physical therapy. You can keep your joints healthy and pain-free for years with the proper care.