With age comes wisdom, and sometimes arthritis. While over 40 million Americans suffer with this often debilitating disease, people over 50 make up a large percentage of those who are affected. The feet and ankles are particularly susceptible to this condition, because there are a whopping 66 joints in all!
Don’t worry! Aging doesn’t have to mean stiff, aching joints. There are several things that you can do to stay active and enjoy life to the fullest. In fact, staying active is a huge part of the fight against arthritis, and many other diseases. Try to exercise five days a week for at least 30 minutes per day. Aerobic exercise and strength training are important, and there are low impact options that may be right for you. Physical therapy and exercises specific to the feet and ankles are often recommended. Before beginning any exercise plan, you should consult your doctor.
You may remember a frequent reminder from your youth, “Stand up straight.” The fact is that good posture protects your body from injury, and can help to reduce pain. It makes sense that leaning forward due to poor posture will not only cause pain in the back and shoulders, but it actually places you at a higher risk for falling. Our bones are all connected, so proper body mechanics mean a healthier you from head to toe.
Finally, you don’t have to do it alone! Taking the pressure and strain off of affected joints is important. Prescription shoes or custom orthotics may make your feet and ankles more comfortable. If opening jars or putting on your shoes has become painful, there are devices available to make these daily tasks easier.
Don’t suffer another day. Dr. Sanjay Patel and his friendly staff will walk you through the ins and outs of arthritis care, and have you back on your feet and enjoying an active life. Make an appointment today by calling the Milford, CT office at (203)876-7736, or the Hamden, CT office at (203)288-4055. You can also schedule an appointment on our website.