One of the effects of the aging process that occurs in the elderly is pain in the joints, which can appear even before the third age. The causes are not always osteoarthritis or arthritis; They can be very diverse and therefore, they require personalized treatment. Fortunately, there are treatments to regain mobility and mitigate pain, thus improving their health and well-being.
What is joint pain?
Joint pain usually occurs in the knees, wrists, elbows, shoulders, ankles, feet and other points where two bones meet. Often, it is also accompanied by stiffness, inflammation or heat in the affected area.
It is important that we treat these pains as we are aging, as they prevent us enjoy the activities that we like or do simple movements like holding something with our hands. In addition, pain, whether mild or strong, significantly reduce our quality of life. For example, it can be difficult for us to sleep and rest.
Why does pain in the joints appear?
Joints are the joints between nearby bones and they provide mobility and elasticity to the body. They are lined with cartilage, an elastic and firm tissue that cushions and allows friction between the bones, thus “softening” the load they bear.
Let’s have a look at the most common causes of joint pain:
– Rheumatoid arthritis: It is an autoimmune disease in which the own immune system attacks the tissues of the joints because it mistakes them for germs. It produces pain and stiffness.
– Lupus: It is also an autoimmune disease, in which the body erroneously attacks healthy tissues and it also causes, apart from the joint pain, other symptoms such as tiredness, hair loss, depression or forgetfulness
– Bursitis: Inflammation of the bursa, the part that serves as a cushion between
muscles, tendons and bones; and that is usually due to the repeated use of this joint. It is common in some professions or sports, but also in older people.
– Gout: It occurs when uric acid accumulates in the blood and it inflames the joints, most often in the big toe, the knee or ankle.
– Tendinitis: It is the inflammation of the tendons, more frequent in the athletes or certain professions, since it is due to the abuse of some tendons in particular.
– Chondromalacia patella: It consists in the softening and the breakdown of the cartilage in the lower part of the kneecap, that is, the knee. It is due to the physical wear of this joint, so it is quite common in the elderly.
– Osteoarthritis: It is produced by the aging and physical wear of a joint. It maybe hereditary or due to the physical wear of the joints, especially when obese or using continuously a few joints in particular.
– Osteomyelitis: It consists of a bacterial infection in the bones.
– Osteoarthritis: It is a chronic rheumatic disease that affects the articulated cartilage. It can be located in the hips, cervical, lumbar, hand or knee. It is characterised by causing pain and stiffness, which often makes it difficult to everyday movements such as closing the hand, walking or climbing stairs.
– Synovial sarcoma: It is a tumour that it is formed from the soft tissues of large joints, often due to hereditary factors. It can be detected at any age.
– Aseptic necrosis: It consists of a loss of blood flow temporary or permanent in a bone that, if it occurs near a joint, it also leads to its collapse.
Tips to avoid joint pain as you age
Sometimes these diseases are irreversible, that is, once they appear we can no longer remove them completely. Fortunately, they are rarely life-threatening and we can always prevent or treat symptoms to make them seem almost non existent. These healthy tips and habits can help us a lot when joint problems appear at a certain age.
– Get up and sit or lie down carefully, avoiding the weight slam onto the joints.
– Move the joints frequently through physical activity that does not load the joints (such as walking or cycling) to promote circulation and keep the muscles of the joints active.
– Avoid spending too much time sitting or in the same position and do a few stretches.
– Wear suitable footwear to cushion your footprint correctly and to ensure stability when walking. (See post: https://cutt.ly/4gTRme1)
– Do not carry a lot of weight, as it overloads the limbs.
–Avoid obesity and being overweight for the same reason that it has to be avoided to carry too much weight.
– The doctor can prescribe non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. If the case is very severe, opioids indicated for reducing pain may be prescribed. Hyaluronic acid may also help to reduce loss of cartilage.
– There are also physiotherapy exercises that help reduce pain, prevent the loss of muscle mass and help facilitate movement of the affected joint. Further more, through specialized treatments, physiotherapists focus on treating the problem that causes pain and not only in alleviating the symptoms.
Healthy habits, diet and supplements to prevent joint pain
Those elderly people who begin to have the first symptoms of these pains or the diseases mentioned, or those who are at risk for genetic reasons or because of the work or physical activity they have done throughout their life, can do the following:
– Follow the tips mentioned above for healthy habits, such as avoiding loading weight, stretching when you spend a lot of time in the same posture, etc.
– Have a healthy diet, with the necessary intake of calcium and vitamin D, which maintain healthy bones, cartilage and muscles and prevent osteoporosis, especially in women.
– As a preventive measure, we recommend you to introduce a supplementation of collagen and magnesium that will help the proper functioning of your muscles and joints.
As well as the combination of collagen, hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, glucosamine sulphate and chondroitin sulphate, a powerful formula that will bring important benefits.
By acting as a lubricant for cartilage and ligaments:
It will help them regain elasticity, reducing pain and improving joint mobility. As well as in the prevention of sports injuries, such as strains and tendinitis.
This information and tips are very important to help elderly people to enjoy this age as in any other stage of their lives. Any time is a good time to feel happy and healthy!
Ask us if you have any further questions, we will be happy to solve them.