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Information for Patients

Sports-Medicine Kalyan-Dombivali
Arthritis - Care
How To Care For Onself?
At Home:
At Workplace:
How To Take Care of Foot:  
Do's & Don'ts For Arthritis Patients:
Instructions For Low Backache Patients:  
Care For cervical Spondylosis patients (Neck pain):  
Care For Osteoarthritis Knee Patients:  
Use of Self- Help Devices:
 
 
 
How To Care For Onself? Do's And Don'ts In Arthritis?

Arthritis At Home:

For a person severely disabled at home everyday tasks like preparing food, getting dressed & cleaning becomes difficult. In such cases occupation therapists can help on find new ways of dealing with difficulties & the right equipment or adaptations. There are various equipments available commercially also which can be bought directly but after an advice from your medical team.

Arthritis At Workplace:

Firstly one should assess following questions:

  • How much standing, walking & sitting you are comfortable & how much is the demand at your work place.
  • How much lifting & reaching can you do? If required rearranging your workplace may help.
  • How much work you can do?
  • Can you travel to your workplace comfortably?
  • Can you hold object easily?
  • Can you write for long hours?
  • Can you perform repetitive movements required at your workplace comfortably? The questions should be answered to when you feel "bad" due to exacerbations of arthritis & also when the symptoms are under control.
  • If you find that you are finding it difficult to work at you workplace than either job alternations or a job change may be required.

Care At Workplace Include:

1.      Avoid a pain in the neck: Documents kept at eyelevel & use of hands free telephone headsets reduces awkword neck motion.

2.      Use of Computer: Ideally one should be sitted 20 to 26 inches from the monitor, the top of monitor should be at the level of your head.

3.      Sit & Stand Intermittently: Neither standing or sitting all day is advisable. It is always better to alternate between them to avoid stiffness. If your job involves sitting it is advisable to take a break every 30 minutes.

4.      Handling Heavy Load: certain tips are useful:

a.       Sliding objects is better than lifting them.

b.      While lifting hold objects close to your body, which is less stressful for your joints.

c.       Whenever handling heavy loads use your largest joints & strongest muscles & spread the load over large surface areas.

d.      It is always advisable to carry items using palms of both hands or arms instead of using hands.

How To Take Care of Foot:

Since most of the body weight is transmitted through foot, good foot care is essential. Years of wears & tears can cause a heavy toll on your feet. Some of medical conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, nerve & circulatory disorders may manifest as foot problems initially.

Proper Shoe Fit Is Essential To Prevent many Foot Ailments

  • The size of foot may change with growing older hence it is always better to get your feet measured before buying shoes.
  • The measurement should be checked while bearing weight on the foot.
  • It is better to check it in the evening when your feet are largest.
  • There may be discrepancy between the sizes of both feet hence both feet must be measured.
  • Shoe should be shaped like your foot & that should be criteria of selection. Don't try to shape your foot to fancy shoes.
  • Don't select shoes by size marked but by actually seeing the fitting in your foot.
  • There should be ˝" space for your longest toe at the end of each shoe after standing up.
  • The tip of the shoe should be broad & rounded to provided adequate space for toes.
  • The heel should fit comfortably in to the widest part of the shoe.
  • Never buy shoe that are too tight & expect it to stretch, they should fit & feel right.
  • High heeled shoes affect normal mechanics of weight bearing & should be avoided.

Do's For Footcare:

  1. Stretching is essential after a prolonged sitting period.
  2. Gentle foot massage & a warm foot bath is advisable.
  3. Foot should not be exposed to extremes of hot & cold temperature.
  4. Avoid Smoking, it may affect circulations in feet.
  5. Avoid sitting for long times (especially with your legs crossed)
Do's & Don'ts For Arthritis Patients:

Do's:

  • Do make a realistic personal commitment to exercise regularly.
  • Do breathe comfortably as you exercise
  • Do repeat your exercise atleast 5 times.
  • Do perform exercise slowly, smoothing & gently.
  • Avoid any jerky movements.
  • Do exercise up to the body tolerance limit repeating body's limitations.
  • Do consult doctor if pain persists.

Don'ts

  • Do not continue with exercise if it is exacerbating pain or causing discomfort.
  • Don't exercise if redness, swelling, local warmth in joint.
  • Do not hold your breath while doing stretches.

Instructions For Low Backache Patients:

  • Erect posture is essential while sitting. Avoid slumping or couching.
  • Avoid sitting on ground. Avoid squatting & sitting cross legged.
  • Take sufficient calcium & Vitamin C in the diet.
  • Avoid lifting heavy weights.
  • Avoid reaching for overhead objects.
  • Avoid climbing up & down staircase.
  • Avoid suddenly turning backwards.
  • Wear low heels.
  • When lifting an object bend your knee & keep your back as straight as possible.
  • To get up, always turn on your side when you have been lying down , then move into a kneeling position. Use the strength of your thighs to push yourself up keeping your back straight.
  • Patients with canal stenosis should avoid sleeping in prone position.
  • To do regular exercise as taught by doctor/ physiotherapist.

Care For cervical Spondylosis patients (Neck pain):

  • To avoid lifting heavy weights
  • To avoid reaching for overhead object
  • To avoid suddenly turning backwards (rotating neck)
  • To avoid any jerky neck movements
  • To exercise as explained by doctor/ physiotherapist

Care For Osteoarthritis Knee Patients:

  • To avoid squatting & sitting cross legged.
  • To reduce weight if obese
  • To avoid climbing up & down staircase
  • To avoid lifting heavy weight
  • To avoid cutting corners
  • To do regular quadriceps strengthening & knee ROM exercise as explained by consultant/ physiotherapist
  • To take adequate calcium & vitamin c in diet

Use of Self- Help Devices: These help in following manner

1.      Gripping devices such as large handles attached to knives or toothbrushes.

2.      For Applying Pressure: Aids such as car door opens or bottle openers can reduce effort.

3.      By Distributing Weights: devices such as mugs with large handle & double handled mugs/ pans can help in carrying things.

4.      Reducing Physical Stress: Tools such as keyboard or revolving chair can help in making work less painful.

5.      Increasing mobility: Canes make it easier & safer to get around. These are also useful in prevention of further progression of joint disease by reducing load on the joint.