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Arthritis and Ankylosing Spondylitis

(continued)

How Is Ankylosing Spondylitis Treated? continued...

In addition, people with spondylitis are urged to not smoke or chew tobacco products because smoking aggravates the condition. Certainly, all of the other reasons why doctors discourage smoking also apply here as well.

People with spondylitis are encouraged to sleep on a firm mattress with the back straight. Placing large pillows under the head is discouraged, since it may promote neck fusion in the flexed position. Similarly, propping the legs up on pillows should be avoided because it may lead to hip or knee fusion in the bent position. Choose chairs, tables, and other work surfaces that will help avoid slumping or stooping. Armchairs are preferred over chairs without arms.

Since those with ankylosing spondylitis could easily hurt their rigid necks or backs, special care should be taken to avoid sudden impact, such as jumping or falling.

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WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini, DO, MS on April 20, 2012
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