In today’s environmentally- and health-conscious society, people try to do little things to make their lives and the world around them a slightly better and safer place. That’s why people recycle and exercise. No one likes to realize that their habits are actually making a problem worse! Unfortunately, that happens all too often with conditions like arthritis. Many different lifestyle and activity choices can actually worsen foot and ankle arthritis over time.
Arthritis is a problem with inflammation and deterioration in the body’s joint tissues. People develop it for a wide variety of reasons, from general wear and tear to injuries to autoimmune diseases. All types of foot and ankle arthritis have a couple things in common, though: painful inflammation and the slow breakdown and stiffening of joints.
Many people have to adjust their activities or lifestyle to accommodate the uncomfortable limitations of the condition. The problem is that some normal, everyday choices could actually be worsening the joint damage. Here are things that you might be doing that are negatively affecting your feet and ankles:
- Too many hard impacts – The hard impacts from running, jumping, and certain sports place a lot of stress on your joints. Even repetitive motions can grind the already irritated joint tissue.
- Too few activities – Being completely inactive allows your joints to stiffen and lose range of motion. Stretching and low-impact exercises help keep you mobile.
- Undertreating the pain – Trying to ignore and push through arthritis pain doesn’t make you tough. It just means you’re allowing more damage to develop, so take care of the pain!
- Eating the wrong foods – Certain types of arthritis, like gout, are highly influenced by food choices. Even without gout, however, eating healthily in general is better for your joints.
- Smoking – Toxins in tobacco actually stress the connective tissues in your body, including those around joints. This can definitely make inflammation damage worse.
Changing habits is hard, but it’s not impossible. Our team at Carolina Podiatry Group is happy to help you correctly manage your joint pain. Don’t wait and let the problem grow worse and harder to treat over time. Just call (803) 285-1411 for our office in Lancaster, SC, or (803) 548-FEET for our location in Fort Mill, SC, to make an appointment with us. You can also use our online request form.