The cold winter months can mean increased joint pain for seniors who have arthritis and other joint disorders. A 2007 study done by researchers at Tufts University found that for every 10-degree drop in temperature, participants with joint disorders had increased pain. The increased pain is most likely due to increasing barometric pressure, which can make joint tissue swell. Help your senior loved one alleviate his or her aches and pains this winter with these tips.
1. Warm the Body from from the Inside Out
Keeping your loved one’s body warm can decrease his or her joint pain. Warming up can be done from the inside out by eating and drinking warm foods. Sipping hot chocolate, herbal teas, decaffeinated coffee, and warm soups can raise your loved one’s core body temperature. However, make sure the drinks don’t have caffeine, as caffeine can weaken bones over time.
If your loved one is living with joint pain, provide the in-home care and support he or she needs to remain comfortable and safe. When considering home care, Columbus, Ohio, families should make sure their senior loved ones have the resources they need to maintain their independence and remain healthy. Trusted in-home care professionals can assist seniors with daily tasks like cooking, bathing, and exercise, and they can also encourage them to focus on healthier lifestyle habits.
Winter weather conditions can make it difficult for seniors to get outside, resulting in a lack of physical activity, but exercise is one of the best things seniors can do to relieve joint pain. Exercise increases blood flow to joints and can help your loved one shed excess weight. Buying an inexpensive treadmill, utilizing at-home workout videos, and going to a local recreation center can help your loved one stay active during winter.
Consider hiring a professional caregiver if your senior loved one needs assistance with exercise or making healthier lifestyle choices. Whether your elderly loved one needs part-time assistance with basic household chores or you need a break from your caregiving duties, the Columbus respite care experts at Home Care Assistance are here to help. All of our respite care services are backed with a 100% satisfaction guarantee, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we never ask our clients to sign long-term contracts.
3. Lose Weight
Gaining weight can put additional pressure on already-strained joints. Studies have found a correlation between obesity and osteoarthritis, and just a 10 percent decrease in body weight can result in a significant drop in pain. Encourage your loved one to eat sensibly and watch his or her portion sizes.
4. Take Warm Baths
Natural warm springs are utilized around the world to relieve arthritis and joint pain. However, most people don’t live close to natural warm springs. An alternative is to encourage your loved one to take warm baths. The water will keep your loved one warm, take pressure off of joints, and have a soothing effect. Adding Epsom salt, which is rich in magnesium, can give your loved one’s bones a healthful boost. Just make sure to keep the water warm rather than hot if your loved one has high blood pressure.
5. Stay Warm at Night
As the temperature drops at night, the chill in the home can make it difficult for seniors to stay warm and get proper rest. A good night’s sleep is essential for a senior’s health, and staying warm at night can help your loved one manage his or her pain. An electric blanket, heated mattress cover, and warm socks can help your loved one stay warm throughout the chilly night.
Living with joint pain can be difficult for both seniors and their families when symptoms interfere with day-to-day activities. Performing daily tasks while simultaneously managing the symptoms of a serious illness can be challenging for seniors. The Columbus live-in care experts at Home Care Assistance are available 24/7 to make sure your loved one has the care he or she needs to remain safe and comfortable while aging in place. To learn about our premier elderly care plans, get in touch with our staff at (614) 481-8888 today.