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Arthritis: Pain

Respect Pain

Pain from arthritis can be debilitating.

Occupational therapist Theresa C. Kane advises people to “respect pain.” In fact, Kane explains that pain indicates there is inflammation that needs to be addressed. The sensation of pain is an opportunity to listen to one’s body and take care.

One instinct is to remain still to avoid pain, but Kane says that the opposite is true: do not remain in the same position for too long. If sitting, move after 20-30 minutes.

There are treatments and medications available for reducing this pain so that people can still enjoy their daily lives. Beyond these traditional approaches are some natural methods that might bring some pain relief, according to the Arthritis Foundation.

Author Denise Lynn Mann states on arthritis.org, “People who listened to music for one hour a day for one week – whether they picked the tunes themselves or researchers provided them – felt more empowered and reported less pain, depression and disability than those who did not listen to music. Average pain ratings among people who listened to music fell by about 20 percent, whereas pain among nonlisteners actually increased.”

Laughter yoga is another possibility since laughter can release endorphins, which have the potential to decrease physical pain. Find a laughter club or laughter yoga near you: log on to www.worldlaughtertour.com or www.laughteryoga.org.  

Remember that changes in the weather can have an affect on pain and it can affect individuals differently: some people may be more sensitive to an increase in heat, whereas others experience discomfort in their joints in the cold.

There is no cure for chronic arthritis and most people with this condition can lead full and active lives when they manage the disease through proper medications, eating a healthy diet, and getting regular exercise. 

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