Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) causes painful, swollen joints. Doctors usually prescribe medications to help manage the symptoms of RA. However, in addition to following the doctor’s advice, there are also things that can be done at home to help seniors to feel better and live their lives more fully. Below are 4 tips for making life with RA a little easier and less painful.
#1: Eat a Healthy Diet
Eating a healthy, balanced diet can not only improve the senior’s overall health, it can also support joint health. A healthy diet is one that contains lots of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Proteins should be low-fat, such as fish, plant-based proteins, poultry, and lean meats. In addition to eating a balanced diet, including foods that have anti-inflammatory properties may also help. Some examples of foods that could help to reduce inflammation include leafy greens, tomatoes, broccoli, cherries, and blueberries.
Senior care providers can assist with preparing healthy meals, even driving older adults to the grocery store or farmers market to purchase plenty of nutritious ingredients.
#2: Get Enough Rest
RA can make your older family member tired. Pacing themselves so they do not overdo it is important. Although it’s important for seniors to be physically active for good health, those with RA should rest when they are feeling tired. They should aim for 8 hours of sleep each night and take breaks throughout the day.
Senior care providers can perform tasks like cleaning, laundry, and cooking, allowing the older adult to save their energy to do the things they enjoy.
#3: Protect Joints
Larger joints can handle more weight and stress than smaller joints, like the ones in the hands and wrists. When the older adult carries something heavy, they should try to lift using their larger joints and carry the item on their arms instead of in their hands. Ask the doctor for a referral to an occupational or physical therapist who can teach the senior ways to perform activities that causes less stress on their joints.
Senior care providers can help older adults to protect their joints by carrying heavy items for them, like grocery bags and laundry baskets.
#4: Stick with Treatment
It can take some time for new medications to take effect on RA symptoms. When your aging relative starts a new drug, find out how long it will be before they can expect to feel better. Encourage them to stick with the treatment prescribed by the doctor. Report changes in symptoms to the doctor so they can determine if changes in treatment are needed.
Senior care providers can help older adults follow their treatment plan by reminding them to take their medications and driving them to therapy appointments.
If You Or An Aging Loved One Are Considering Hiring Senior Care in Gulfport, FL, Please Contact The Caring Staff At Assisting Hands Home Care Today! 727-748-4211.