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Can overdoing it physically make my rheumatoid arthritis (RA) symptoms worse?

ANSWER

You clean the garage, push yourself too hard at the gym, or help your daughter move into her new apartment. All that stress on your joints can leave you aching the next day.

You can avoid this trigger if you pace yourself and take breaks. If you need to do physical work, protect your joints. Carry heavy objects with two hands, and always bend from the knees when lifting.

SOURCES:

Arthritis Foundation: "Understanding RA Flares," "Arthritis Flares Are Normal But Still Difficult," "Stress and Worry Affect RA," "Rheumatoid Arthritis and Sleep," "Rheumatoid Arthritis Self-Care," "Track+React."

Johns Hopkins Medicine: "RA Flares: What Triggers a Rheumatoid Arthritis Flare?" "Vaccinations for the Arthritis Patient."

Cedars-Sinai: "Lifestyle Modifications."

UW Medicine, Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine: "Stress and Arthritis."

UpToDate: "Patient Education: Complementary and Alternative Therapies for Rheumatoid Arthritis."

Mayo Clinic: "Rheumatoid arthritis: Can diet affect symptoms?" "Rheumatoid Arthritis: Does Pregnancy Affect Symptoms?"

FDA: "Snort. Sniffle. Sneeze. No Antibiotics, Please."

American College of Rheumatology: "Pregnancy and Rheumatic Disease."

CDC: "Rheumatoid Arthritis."

Reviewed by David Zelman on July 22, 2017

SOURCES:

Arthritis Foundation: "Understanding RA Flares," "Arthritis Flares Are Normal But Still Difficult," "Stress and Worry Affect RA," "Rheumatoid Arthritis and Sleep," "Rheumatoid Arthritis Self-Care," "Track+React."

Johns Hopkins Medicine: "RA Flares: What Triggers a Rheumatoid Arthritis Flare?" "Vaccinations for the Arthritis Patient."

Cedars-Sinai: "Lifestyle Modifications."

UW Medicine, Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine: "Stress and Arthritis."

UpToDate: "Patient Education: Complementary and Alternative Therapies for Rheumatoid Arthritis."

Mayo Clinic: "Rheumatoid arthritis: Can diet affect symptoms?" "Rheumatoid Arthritis: Does Pregnancy Affect Symptoms?"

FDA: "Snort. Sniffle. Sneeze. No Antibiotics, Please."

American College of Rheumatology: "Pregnancy and Rheumatic Disease."

CDC: "Rheumatoid Arthritis."

Reviewed by David Zelman on July 22, 2017

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