Avoid Common Knee Problems As You Age
Knee problems are an all too common problem many people experience as they age. Many people are not as active as they would like to be as they get older because of things like knee pain, and then there is the possibility of knee replacement to help relieve the pain once it gets too bad.
We put a lot of stress on our knees on a regular basis and while they were built to handle quite a bit certain behaviors, or lack of them, could be aging your knees faster than they need to and pave the way to increased pain and disability down the road. By taking the time when you are younger to make better basic choices you can help keep your knees healthier as you age.
Pay attention to your posture; bad posture puts excess pressure on the knees. Buy shoes with good support and try to avoid wearing not supportive shoes when possible. Overall health and fitness also play a big part in keeping your knees healthy.
Watch Your Weight
It is very important to maintain a healthy BMI, or body mass index, as your knees play a big role in supporting your body weight. Each additional pound of body weight can add up to 3 extra pounds of pressure on the knee joints when walking even more when doing other activities like running. Carrying too much more weight than your body frame was meant to handle will start compromising your knees.
Obesity is actually one of the biggest risk factors for the development of osteoarthritis because it speeds up cartilage breakdown. Losing unhealthy weight just may be the most important thing to do if you want to reduce your risk of developing a significant knee problem.
Regular exercise is the other necessary component in maintaining knee health. Not only will exercise help you to remain at a healthy weight, it is also important to maintaining the core strength of your knee joints. Without exercise the muscles around your knee will weaken which leaves your knee joints lacking support so the joints, tendons, ligaments and bones will be more vulnerable to injury.
For the best results choose an exercise that will have a low risk of knee injury as an injury increases the risk of developing osteoarthritis. Regular moderate exercise is typically better for the joints than occasionally performing strenuous exercise. Choose low-impact exercises that build strength, flexibility and stamina. Things like walking, biking, swimming, yoga and weight lifting can help strengthen the muscles around the knee joint while also improving circulation and range of motion. Exercising for at least 30 minutes most days of the week is best.
Arthritis of the knee is considered a common consequence of aging, but it doesn’t have to be inevitable. By taking care of your knees throughout your life you can help avoid or lessen knee problems as you age.