What is the best treatment for osteoarthritis? Hint: it’s not pills or surgery!

The most recent clinical guidelines from the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) have placed exercise as “the most effective treatment, ahead of medications such as opioids and surgery”

This is GREAT NEWS!

Exercise can be performed for free, even from the comfort of your own home.

Want to get straight to relieving pain? Watch this video for 3 exercises you can do now to help alleviate symptoms

 

How does exercise help osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a condition which involves wearing down of the protective tissue at the ends of your bones (in your joints). Here are some of the key reasons exercise can help in management:

  • Weight Reduction: Losing weight can decrease pressure off the joint surface and therefore reduce symptoms or eliminate them entirely.
  • Improving strength and control around the joint: This can improve the transfer of forces through the join surface and therefore reduce symptoms
  • Desensitisation: Often the nerve endings around a painful joint can become hyper-sensitive and begin producing additional pain. Gradual increase in joint loading over time can reduce this sensitivity making you feel more comfortable with movement

What exercises are best?

If you have pain in your joints – choosing exercise that does not aggravate your symptoms can be challenging. This is where a physiotherapist can assist greatly by using their wide range of knowledge to choose exercises that provide enough (but not too much) load to your muscle and joint.

Our focus is to target: weight loss, muscle strengthening, motor control/coordination and desensitisation of the nerves around your joint.

Depending on your level of pain and the joint(s) effected – we will use a wide range of techniques ranging from:

  • hydrotherapy (pool-based) exercise
  • body weight strengthening (home or at gym)
  • weights/gym based exercise
  • cardiovascular – weight loss

Need help choosing the right exercises for you?

There is no time better than the present to get started with your osteoarthritis management plan – head over to our Online Booking page or give us a call on (02) 4721 5567 to get started on your road to recovery.

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