At Paul S. DeMarco, DPM we frequently see patients suffering from joint pain, swelling and stiffness. Osteoarthritis is one of the most common causes of joint discomfort. Other sources include: trauma or injury to a joint, rheumatoid arthritis or other systemic disease, infection, an inflammatory response, bursitis and problems with the structure of the feet. It’s important to have our podiatrist, Dr. Paul S. DeMarco, evaluate any joint issues you are having. The cause of the discomfort will dictate the appropriate course of treatment.
There are, however, several ways that you can improve the health and strength of your joints. Even if you are not experiencing any joint problems currently, these steps can help you prevent joint issues in the future. Where can you find these joint health boosters?
In Your Bathroom—your scale is a tool to aid in caring for your joints. Being overweight puts a huge amount of strain on the joints of your feet and ankles. Maintaining a healthy weight or losing weight, even a small amount, can greatly improve the health of your joints. Research has shown that losing as little as 11 pounds can cut your risk of developing osteoarthritis in your knees by half.
On Your Plate—beyond weight loss, your diet can impact the health of your joints in other ways. Certain foods can trigger an inflammatory response in the body and others can suppress or reduce inflammation.
In Your Closet—go through your shoe wardrobe and get rid of high heels. The higher the heel, the greater the pressure they exert on your joints. Experts say that a three-inch heel exerts seven times more stress than a one-inch heel. While you’re rummaging around in your closet, dig out your sneakers or walking shoes and find a way to add more exercise to your weekly routine. Weight bearing exercise makes joints stronger and being active overall improves flexibility and range of motion in your joints.
At the Podiatrist’s Office—the foot doctor can make recommendations to reduce stress on joints. Custom orthotics can help compensate for structural issues in the foot. Braces may provide stability and strength for joints that are inflamed or in pain.
To learn more about how to protect the health of your joints, contact our Somers Point office by calling: (609)927-4894