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Relieving Osteoarthritis Pain: The Dos and Don’ts

November 15, 2019 in Arthritis

Arthritis Diet: Is there and Anti-Inflammatory Diet?

What is Osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis alongside psoriatic arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. While psoriatic and rheumatoid arthritis are autoimmune disorders, osteoarthritis is caused by "wear and tear." Despite having some similar symptoms like joint pain, stiffness or swelling, they are actually quite different1. Osteoarthritis occurs when the protective cartilage that cushions the ends of bones wear down over time. Without this cartilage, bones rub together at the joints causing pain, unpleasant swelling, or inflammation. Even though osteoarthritis can affect any joint, it is most common in the knees, hips and spine. And as sufferers know, relieving osteoarthritis pain can be difficult.

Old age, sex, obesity, sports injuries and/or genetics are factors that can contribute to the development of osteoarthritis. While a physician-approved medication routine is often essential to managing the pain, there are other strategies that osteoarthritis sufferers can stick to on a day to day basis to find effective relief from their pain. Just as there are best practices for arthritis pain management, there are also habits that osteoarthritis sufferers should actively try to avoid. Here are the dos and don'ts to manage your osteoarthritis pain and help bring you one step closer to a pain-free lifestyle.

Relieving Osteoarthritis Pain: The Dos and Don'ts

Download the Free Arthritis Pain Management Plan

This plan includes:

  • Free workout plan
  • Free meal plan
  • A free pain management guide
  • Much more!

DO: Maintaining a Healthy, Well-Balanced Diet Helps in Relieving Osteoarthritis Pain

DON'T: Eat Foods that Cause Inflammation

A better diet can lead to better pain management. Although maintaining a healthy, well-balanced diet can't relieve your osteoarthritis pain on its own, it can help manage the pain on a daily basis and help avoid excess inflammation. Inflammation is not the only dietary side-effect osteoarthritis pain sufferers should look to avoid. Things like fatigue, weight gain, cholesterol and poor circulation, all byproducts of a poor diet, can also negatively affect your ability to manage OA flare-ups. A healthy, well-balanced diet that includes foods that target inflammation, can help decrease inflammation, make you feel more energized as well as help with weight loss. There are many foods that cause inflammation in the body and can affect osteoarthritis pain. Avoiding these foods can help in relieving osteoarthritis pain3:

  • Sugar: cakes, cookies, and white bread can leave the joints feeling weak
  • Salt: cause cells to retain water making them swell
  • Fried foods: oils creates a chemical reaction in your body and can raise cholesterol
  • White Flour
  • Omega 6 Fatty Acids: salmon, walnuts, soy
  • Dairy
  • Alcohol

For more information on how your diet effects arthritis read here.

osteoarthritis pain

DO: Try to Exercise Regularly

DON'T: Preform Intense Exercises That Can Cause Further Damage to Your Joints

Finding the motivation to exercise with arthritis pain can be quite hard, but it's been proven that physical activity can help reduce symptoms of arthritis pain and being inactive can actually make your symptoms worse. Not only does exercise help you avoid stiffness in your joints by getting them moving, exercising regularly can help you manage and/or lose weight. Being overweight puts pressure on the joints. Therefore, losing weight by eating healthy and exercising regularly can help improve your mobility, decrease pain and could prevent further damage to your joints in the future4.

Working out with pain can often be very challenging. Which is why it's important to remember that exercise doesn't mean you have to run a marathon or be a lifting champion to reap the rewards of a successful workout routine. The goal is to preform low-impact, light exercise that doesn't put too much pressure on your joints to get your body moving and help you feel good. Remember to go at your own pace and consult your doctor to understand what exercises and activities you can safely engage in. Some of these exercises include:

  • Stretching
  • Swimming
  • Walking
  • Yoga
  • Pilates

For more information on how to exercise with arthritis pain read here.

relieving osteoarthritis pain

DO: Drink Plenty of Water

DON'T: Sit Still for Long Periods of Times Causing Stiffness in the Joints

When it comes to arthritis pain, consistent hydration is a crucial step to feeling better. Dehydration can be the cause of many different health issues, specifically to arthritis though it can cause joint pain or make your current joint pain worse5. When dealing with osteoarthritis pain it's important to keep moving and drink lots of water to help keep the cartilage around the joints lubricated and avoid any stiffness. As well, water can help flush toxins out of the body in order to help prevent inflammation.

relieving osteoarthritis pain

DO: Use a DR-HO'S TENS Machine

DON'T: Rely Entirely on Medication

With the right treatment plan and medication from your doctor, arthritis pain can be addressed with anti-inflammatory medications and painkillers. Although this can help alleviate symptoms, relieving pain also comes down to far more than just medication. For those looking for a drug-free, non-invasive option, maintaining a healthy lifestyle along with DR-HO'S Pain Therapy System can help manage your osteoarthritis pain. DR-HO'S Pain Therapy System uses a TENS unit that can help in relieving osteoarthritis pain.

TENS Therapy is a form of electrical stimulation therapy that uses a safe, gentle electrical impulse to block pain signals from reaching the brain. The TENS device mimics a massage that can help promote blood and oxygen flow to the affected painful joints. The increase of circulation and oxygen flow helps fight inflammation and brings nutrients to damaged tissues. The device allows you to target specific areas of pain while choosing the intensity of the stimulation all from the comfort of your own home. You can use TENS Therapy to manage pain in these areas:

  • Knees
  • Shoulders
  • Hands/Wrists
  • Feet/Ankles
  • Hips
  • Back
  • Neck

For more information on where to place the TENS therapy pads to help target specific areas read here.

what is a tens machine

Relieving osteoarthritis pain can be difficult, but with these tips it can become more manageable. It's important to remember that changing small things in your life on a daily basis can make a major difference. We encourage you to follow the advice we gave you to help manage the pain however, it is also beneficial to remember what to avoid to help get you one step closer to a pain-free lifestyle.

More Information on Arthritis and TENS Therapy:

Arthritis Diet: Is there and Anti-Inflammatory Diet?


  1. Health Line, Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA) vs. Osteoarthritis (OA): Which Is It?
  2. Mayo Clinic, Osteoarthritis
  3. Health Line, 6 Foods to Avoid is You Have Osteoarthritis
  4. Health Line, Natural Relief From Arthritis Pain
  5. Droplet, Droplet on Joint Pain and Arthritis
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