Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis
March 30 2019
Chiropractic office Serving Port St. Lucie, Fort Pierce, FL.

Arthritis Pain Relief Fort Pierce FL

Understanding Rheumatoid Arthritis

The word arthritis means joint inflammation and is often used in reference to rheumatic diseases. Rheumatic diseases include more than 100 conditions, including gout, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, psoriatic arthritis, and many more. Although rheumatoid arthritis often begins in middle age and is more frequent in the older generation, it can also start at a young age.

Rheumatoid arthritis causes pain, swelling, stiffness, and loss of function in the joints. Several features distinguish it from other kinds of arthritis:

  • Tender, warm, and swollen joints.
  • Fatigue, sometimes fever, and a general sense of not feeling well.
  • Pain and stiffness lasts for more than 30 minutes after a long rest.
  • The condition is symmetrical. If one hand is affected, the other one is, too.
  • The wrist and finger joints closest to the hand are most frequently affected. Neck, shoulder, elbow, hip, knee, ankle, and feet joints can also be affected.
  • The disease can last for years and can affect other parts of the body, not only the joints.

Rheumatoid arthritis is highly individual. Some people suffer from mild arthritis that lasts from a few months to a few years and then goes away. Mild or moderate arthritis have periods of worsening symptoms (flares) and periods of remissions, when the patient feels better. People with severe arthritis feel pain most of the time. The pain lasts for many years and can cause serious joint damage and disability.

May I Exercise?

Exercise is critical in successful arthritis management. It helps maintain healthy and strong muscles, joint mobility, flexibility, endurance, and helps control weight. Rest, on the other hand, helps to decrease active joint inflammation, pain, and fatigue. For best results, arthritis patients need a good balance between the two: more rest during the active phase of arthritis, and more exercise during remission. During acute systematic flares or local joint flares, patients should put joints gently through their full range of motion once a day, with periods of rest. To see how much rest is best during flares, patients should talk to their health care providers.

The following exercises can be recommended for patients with arthritis for approximately 20 minutes a day:

Range-of-motion exercises: stretching and dance
Strengthening exercises: light weight lifting
Aerobic or endurance exercises: walking, bicycle riding, and swimming
Swimming: minimal risk of stress injuries and low impact on the body

Note:

If you experience any of the following, contact your chiropractor.

    • Unusual or persistent fatigue
    • Increased weakness
    • Decreased range of motion
    • Increased joint swelling
    • Pain that lasts more than one hour after exercising. Doctors of chiropractic can help arthritis patients develop or adjust their exercise programs to achieve maximum health benefits with minimal discomfort and will identify the activities that are off limits for this particular arthritis patient.Nutrition for the Rheumatoid Arthritis PatientArthritis medications help suppress the immune system and slow the progression of the disease. For those who prefer an alternative approach, nutrition may provide complementary support. Nutrition can play a role in controlling the inflammation, and possibly also in slowing the progression of rheumatoid arthritis.Some foods and nutritional supplements can be helpful in managing arthritis:
    • Fatty-acid supplements
    • Deep-sea fish, such as salmon, tuna, herring, and halibut
    • Turmeric, a spice that’s used to make curry dishes, may also be helpful
    • Ginger extract has been shown to be beneficial in terms of inflammation
    • Nettle leaf extract may inhibit some inflammatory pathways
    • A vegetarian or low-allergen diet can help with the management of rheumatoid arthritisAlways consult a physician before taking any dietary supplementsWhat Can Your Doctor of Chiropractic Do?If you suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, your chiropractor can help you plan an individualized spinal adjustment and possibly an exercise program that can:
    • Help you restore the lost range of motion to your joints.
    • Improve your flexibility and endurance.
    • Increase your muscle tone and strength.

Doctors of chiropractic can suggest nutrition and supplement advice that may be helpful in controlling and reducing joint inflammation.Dr. Susan Sanders, DC has been serving families for 20 years and has been serving the Treasure Coast for the last 10 years providing family chiropractic care and personal injury treatments. The office is 1,400 square feet of Chiropractic and Rehabilitative therapies. We provide many types of adjusting techniques, by hand or with the use of adjusting tools to suit every one’s individual needs. We are in network with many insurance plans and also provide cash services as well as family and business contracts for those looking for group coverage. We look forward to serving you.Dr. Sue