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Osteoarthritis Health Center

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Osteoarthritis - Home Treatment

When you have osteoarthritis, you may find it hard to do your daily tasks. Your joints may ache or feel stiff, and they may hurt when you move. You can do some things at home to feel better.

Lifestyle changes

  • Rest. If your joints hurt a lot or are swollen, take a break. But try not to let too much time pass before you get moving again. A lack of activity can cause your muscles and joints to become weak. Getting enough sleep can help your mood and help you cope with pain. If you are having trouble sleeping, talk to your doctor.
  • Stay at a healthy weight. Being overweight puts extra stress on your joints. But losing weight can help. It can decrease the symptoms of osteoarthritis and allow you to be more active.2
  • Exercise. Some people may be reluctant to exercise when they have arthritis, but it can help reduce pain and improve balance. Try exercises that don't put a lot of stress on your joints, such as swimming, biking, walking, water exercises, and lifting light weights. And consider taking an exercise class designed for people who have arthritis. Many fitness clubs, community centers, and senior centers offer these classes. Be sure to talk to your doctor or physical therapist about what kind of activity is best for you.
    actionset.gif Osteoarthritis: Exercising With Arthritis

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