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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Encourages Simple, Natural Self-Management Strategies For Reducing Summertime Arthritis Pain

7/21/2014 12:40:42 PM

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ATLANTA, July 21, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than one in five adults in the U.S. have arthritis, and 60% are under age 65. The number of people with arthritis is continuing to increase making it more important than ever to communicate to them often overlooked pain management options.

Everyone knows physical activity and weight management are good for overall health, but not many people know the positive impact they can have on arthritis.  Many people with arthritis are not taking advantage of physical activity and weight management as natural pain relievers.  For example, 31% of people with arthritis are obese, and 44% are inactive.  Obese people with arthritis are 44% more likely to be inactive.

Summertime months present the perfect opportunity to remind Americans living with arthritis that activity and weight management are simple, natural self-management strategies that are effective in reducing arthritis pain. Simple self-management strategies to manage arthritis pain through physical activity and weight management are detailed below:

  • Engage in 30 minutes of physical activity five times a week. This can reduce joint pain and improve mobility in as little as 4-6 weeks. Older adults with knee osteoarthritis who engage in moderate physical activity at least three times a week can reduce the risk of arthritis-related disability by 47%.
  • Maintain a healthy weight. Even losing one pound can make a difference, as there is a four 4 pound reduction in force exerted on the knee for every pound lost. A modest weight loss (5% or 12 pounds for a 250 pound person) can help reduce pain and disability.

You don't have to go it alone! Interactive workshops such as the Arthritis Self-Management Program and the Chronic Disease Self-Management Program are low-cost (about $25 - $35) and available in communities across the country. Attending one of these programs can help with learning ways to manage pain, exercise safely, and gain control of arthritis. There are also exercise programs, such as the Arthritis Foundation Exercise Program, EnhanceFitness, and Walk with Ease, that can help people with arthritis increase their physical activity safely and comfortably.

This summer the CDC encourages Americans living with Arthritis to get outside and be active to help manage their arthritis pain.


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