Joint Pain and Building Strong Bones
Summertime is upon us once again and we are all itching to get outside. What’s on the go for you? Kayaking? Perhaps some hiking up a scenic trail?
Amid the excitement and the activity, it can be hard to accept when your body tells you to slow down, even for a little bit. But fear not, joint pain is one of the most often complaints and below, we will talk about some causes, medications and most importantly prevention. Read on to find out how to build strong bones that withstand the trials of time.
It’s All in the Knees
It should come as no surprise that joint pain in knees is very common. Think about the amount of labor they go through during day-to-day life: sitting, squatting, standing, running and so on and so forth. The knee bends constantly to make sure you can do everything you please. And sometimes, it starts to hurt.
This is common. In 2010, more than 10 million doctor’s visits in the US were due to knee pain and discomfort. But do not be alarmed: some of the issues can be solved at home with a little TLC. But in order to treat it, we need to talk about what causes it.
Common Causes of Joint Pain
One of the most common causes is simple: age. As your age, your body ages with you. It’s almost like your body logs every movement, every slip, every fall, every step. And that’s okay. It’s okay to age and feel it – it’s how it’s supposed to be.
But there are some things you can do to help treat the pain and hopefully prevent it in the future.
Treating Joint Pain
Most joint pain with swelling can be treated with over the counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) medications such as Aspirin, Advil, or Aleve. Depending on the seriousness of your joint pain, these will generally do the trick with a bit of rest and ice.
If you have the pain but no swelling, you can use something with acetaminophen – like Tylenol.
Glucosamine is also very useful in treating and helping joint pain. Many people take the supplement to treat arthritis and osteoporosis. Glucosamine is usually extracted from the shells of shellfish. It occurs naturally in the fluid around the bones and can contribute to bone and joint health as it plays an important role in building healthy cartilage.
Cartilage is crucial to joint and bone health. It is a rubbery connective tissue acts as a sort of padding to bones where they meet joins. The issue is, as we age, the cartilage starts to wear down which is where glucosamine comes in: it has been shown to slow down the process of wear on the cartilage as we age.
A great homecare tip to get you back on your feet is PRICE:
- Protect the joint
- Rest the joint
- Ice the joint for 15 minutes a couple of times a day
- Compress the joint with an elastic band
- Elevate the joint, preferably above the level of your heart.
This method works best for short-term joint pain. If you have chronic joint pain, it would be best to contact your doctor to come up with a treatment plan and some help with physical therapy.
Build Bones Strong – How to Increase Bone Density.
Prevention is always better than treatment. To prevent things like joint pain and other aches in your body, it is important that you build healthy bones that can stand the trials of time and activity.
This starts with a healthy diet: make sure you’re getting all the vitamins and minerals your bones need to be well nourished and strong.
Make sure you are eating lots of vegetables. Vegetables are great sources of Vitamin C. Vitamin C helps build collagen which makes up 30% of our bones. It also helps stimulate bone-building cells, making it an important part of your diet.
Calcium is also very important for healthy bones. I’m sure we’ve all heard that milk make your bones strong and this is true. But there are also other ways to get lots of calcium in your diet: incorporate lots of leafy greens which will give you both Calcium and Vitamin K.
The Magical Spice – Turmeric
Turmeric, a spice used in Middle Eastern and Indian cuisine, has been shown to increase bone density, especially among the elderly. The orange spice has a multitude of health benefits: it is a natural anti-inflammatory, it is good for your skin and increase antioxidants in the body.
Turmeric’s capabilities come from curcumin that exists naturally in it. Curcumin has been shown to improve bone density by 7% in 6 months in a study conducted in 2017. Turmeric can be incorporated in your food by cooking or supplements can be taken.
Think Healthy Bones
At the end of the day, it is important to make sure your bones are getting everything they need to function and take yours through a long life. This might mean making some dietary changes or even adding supplements to your routine. Whatever it is, take care of them so they can keep taking you through hikes, kayaking, and every outdoor activity your heart desires this summer.