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Taking charge of your summer joint health

Taking charge of your summer joint health

Taking Care of Your Joint Health this Summer

Summer is in full swing here in Campbell County, Wyoming and for many, that means an increase in activity. For those living with joint pain, this can prove to be a challenge at times. Luckily, with the right tips, you can have an eventful summer enjoying the outdoors, injury-free. Here’s how:

Staying Healthy Mentally and Physically

With warmer weather and ample amounts of sunshine, many people find themselves in a better mental state. This can help you feel better physically and help to improve your daily workouts as well. The two go hand-in-hand, and the more active you are, the greater chance you have of reducing your levels of stress, muscle tension, and joint pain!

Workouts Lead to Quality Sleep

When you schedule your workouts earlier in the day, your body temperature naturally rises. When it finally drops, it triggers tiredness and can even reset your sleep cycle—leading you to better-rested nights. Lack of sleep has been known to lead to stress and more mental fogginess.

A Natural Energy Booster:

With physical activity, you get a release of endorphins—a natural hormone your body produces to give you energy. The more you work out, the more your endorphin levels can increase. When you feel refreshed, the more likely you are to continue leading an active lifestyle.

Relieves Muscle Tension and Joint Pain

One of the leading causes of muscle tension is prolonged sitting. A sedentary life can do a lot to you, physically and mentally. When you regularly warm and work out your muscles and joints, you gain flexibility and reduce pain all while increasing your mood.

Getting Out and Staying Active

When you consistently fit physical activity into your everyday schedule, you’ll find that you feel better more often. When it comes to muscle mass—if you don’t use it, you lose it. As you age, muscle mass decreases as well, making it essential to incorporate strength training into your routine as well.

For most people, high impact workouts won’t be the best place to start to help you build muscle. Starting out with too high of an intensity can actually increase your chance of injury. You’ll want to work up your resistance and strength, slowly. If you are getting active later in life, here’s what you should know:

Decide Your Workout Plan

As you begin forming your workout routine, remember to start with low-impact exercises like taking brisk walks or trying out water aerobics. Eventually you can work up your intensity and move onto more strenuous activities once you build up your strength.

 

If you suffer from persistent joint pain, have sustained an injury in the past, or have joint damage, you should speak with your doctor about what workouts may be best for you.

Start Building Muscle Mass

If you’ve already noticed a decrease in muscle mass, it’s not too late to work on regaining it. In some cases, it may require a combination of physical therapy and some dietary changes.

Don’t Forget Hydration

Our overall health depends on our hydration. When your body lacks proper hydration, you can see side effects in every aspect of your body, including your joints and muscles. If you have joint pain, here’s how dehydration could be causing some other issues:

Higher Chance of Inflammation:

Your body needs water to flush out toxins that can lead to swelling and inflammation. Furthermore, your cartilage needs that water to move and support your joints as they should.

Better Joint Function

Joints act as cushions for your bones. Without them, your bones would constantly be rubbing against each other, causing pain and damage. When you are properly hydrated, so are your joints, and they can freely move and bend as they should. Just like a dry sponge, dehydrated joints can't bend or move around freely.

Water also helps blood flow freely throughout your body, including your joints — allowing for better circulation and less pain and stiffness.

Conditioning Your Body For Prevention

Many typical summer and fall injuries occur because of improper conditioning. Whether it’s from a lack of warming up or incorrect form, many of these injuries could have been avoided. Not only that, when injuries go ignored, they can worsen over time, leading to further damage and prolonged pain. That’s where sports medicine comes in.

What is Sports Medicine?

Sports medicine physicians are medical doctors who diagnose and treat exercise or athletic-induced injuries. This means they can help those recovering from a sports injury and those with past injuries improve mobility and capability, regardless of skill level. If you’re athletic or involved in sports, you can benefit from seeing one of our sports medicine specialists.

Prevention is Key

Many Athletic injuries can be avoided with adequate strength training and knowledge. A Sports Medicine Specialist can work with you to come up with a better exercise program so you are making progress and seeing the best results possible. You can also increase your mobility and capability for a more active lifestyle.

Other reasons to see a sports medicine specialist include:

  • Head injuries
  • Chronic or acute illnesses that can affect performance (such as asthma and diabetes)
  • Nutrition

Orthopedic Care in Gillette, Wyoming

If you have concerns when it comes to your orthopedic health, Powder River Orthopedics & Spine (PROS) is here to help in Gillette, Wyoming. We can evaluate your options so you can rest assured that you get the best possible outcome and are back to a happy and active life in no time.


Call the PROS at 307.686.1413 or visit www.cchwyo.org/PROS to learn more.