Feeling Stiff and Achy? Physiotherapy Can Help!

stiff and achy

Feeling Stiff and Achy? Physiotherapy Can Help!

Everyone wakes up feeling some pain in their joints or muscles from time to time. But if you find yourself consistently waking up stiff and achy, it might be time for pain-relief work with a physiotherapist. Aching or stiff joints may be a minor problem that is easily remedied; in other cases, your doctor may have diagnosed a condition or ailment that will benefit from physiotherapy. We’ve worked with a wide range of patients who struggle with aches and pains, and NRG Athletes Therapy Fitness Winnipeg, CA would be happy to work with you to help you enjoy a better quality of life as well!

Why Am I Stiff and Achy When I Wake Up?

Joint tissues become irritated throughout the day and by the evening, when your mind is tired, you might not even notice it. When you fall asleep and remain mostly immobile overnight, that allows the inflammation to grow thicker and irritate the joints even more. The result is that when you wake up in the morning, your joints are stiff and achy. After you start moving around, the inflammation becomes more liquid-like and the pain will lessen. One common remedy for this, which your physiotherapist is likely to recommend, is that you stay properly hydrated throughout the day. Staying hydrated allows your body’s tissues to function at their normal pace, whereas dehydration slows down your chemical processes.

More Serious Medical Conditions

If your doctor has diagnosed you with a more serious medical condition that impacts your joints and tissues, physiotherapy can probably help. Here are some of the most common ailments that can be relieved with the guidance of a physiotherapist:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Osteoarthritis.
  • Lupus.
  • Bursitis.
  • Gout.
  • Bone cancer.

All of these conditions can cause aching, stiffness and joint pain. A physiotherapist will work with you to help you try to achieve a greater range of motion with affected limbs or joints, and to relieve the pain so you can enjoy a better quality of life.

Tips for Stiff and Aching Joints

Your physiotherapy regimen will largely depend on your specific symptoms or diagnosis. However, there are a lot of common recommendations that work hand-in-hand with physiotherapy. Here are some tips that your physiotherapist will likely share with you on your journey to wellness.

  • Get Good Sleep. Getting enough sleep at night creates a circular benefit with physiotherapy exercises. When you get enough sleep, it increases your ability to effectively exercise. When you exercise regularly, it helps you to get better sleep. Better sleep habits and physical exercise are a powerful “one-two punch” for keeping aches and stiffness away.
  • Use Better Posture. If your work requires you to sit at a desk for long hours, or if you stay sedentary for long periods every day, try to get up every half hour for some light stretches. Move around to keep your circulation going, which helps to relieve joint pain. Proper posture when sitting or standing will help your joints to function properly. When we use bad posture, it puts strain on areas of the body that weren’t meant to be stressed.
  • Improve Your Diet. Be sure to consume lots of brightly colored fruits and vegetables. These healthy foods have more antioxidants and vitamins, which fight off the inflammation that can lead to joint pain. A better diet also helps you to get better sleep and helps your body receive more benefit from exercise.

Physiotherapy Exercises

You don’t have to be a bodybuilder or an Olympic-class athlete to work with a physiotherapist. Most of the exercises and stretches that your physiotherapist will recommend are simple to perform and don’t require any special equipment — and most of our patients are just regular people (not super athletes).

Contact NRG Athletes Physiotherapy Winnipeg, CA today to schedule a consultation on how physiotherapy can help you relieve those aches and pains!

Reduce Pain and Inflammation Through Nutrition

Internal inflammation can wreak havoc with your health. You may already be seeing a physiotherapist for inflammation-related health issues, such as arthritis. Whether you have a specific diagnosis or generalized pain in your back and joints, NRG Athletes Physiotherapy Winnipeg, CA can help. Your physiotherapist may also suggest an anti-inflammatory diet for additional pain relief.

What to Avoid

One of the quickest way to reverse nutrition-based inflammation is to stop eating the foods most associated with it. Unfortunately, for many people, these foods tend to be convenience items. That means that you may need to readjust how you think about preparing meals and snacks in your quest for pain relief.

On the plus side? There are few surprises in the types of foods that make inflammation worse. You probably already know these nutritional “no-nos” – they’re also bad for your heart and your waistline. So whether your guilty pleasures are savory or sweet, begin to ease them out of your meal plans.

Packaged meals and junk food snacks are often full of trans fat, sugar and preservatives. In addition, avoid fatty and fried foods, red meat, pastries and donuts, white breads, white rice and semolina pasta. If you’re at all sensitive to inflammatory foods, these are among the worst when it comes to bringing on painful flare-ups.

How to Replace Inflammatory Foods

Many “bad guys” in the food world have easy alternatives. Substitute white bread with whole-grain bread, white rice with brown rice, and semolina pasta with wheat or garbanzo pasta. In place of hamburger, chops and meatloaf, focus on fish, chicken and veggie “steaks.”

Preparation is also an important component of an anti-inflammatory diet. Avoid frying foods or ordering fried foods when eating out. Instead, opt for the same ingredients that have been grilled, roasted or steamed. Rather than topping main courses and side dishes with creamy sauces and dressings, choose healthier alternatives. Topping options for various salads, side dishes and main courses include vinaigrette, Greek yogurt, tomato salsa, fruit salsa, lemon juice and herbal olive oil.

Anti-Inflammatory All-Stars

Along with healthy substitutions of inflammatory foods, look for nutritional choices you can make that directly address internal swelling, Make sure to add these to your meal plans each week, and assess whether your health issues seem to ease in response.

Certain anti-inflammatory herbs, spices and supplements may provide some pain relief. Multivitamins and fish oil pills are among the supplements noted for their anti-inflammatory properties. Good herbal supplement choices include boswellia, green tea, cat’s claw and devil’s claw. Other non-food items are turmeric and fresh or powdered ginger for seasoning and green tea as a soothing beverage. (Enjoy green tea hot or chilled.)

The “rainbow” of fruits and vegetables that you’ve heard of for heart health and boosted immunity may also fight inflammation. Eat more colorful fruits like berries and mangos. Vegetables that range from dark green (kale and spinach) to orange (carrots and sweet potatoes) to red/purple (beets and tomatoes) to yellow (sweet peppers and corn) are also great choices.

Along with fish oil pills for omega-3 inflammation protection, add more actual fish to your diet. The types highest in Omega-3 fats are, not surprisingly, fatty fish. Salmon, herring, sardines, trout, mackerel and tuna all may provide some pain relief when inflammation is the culprit.

Long-term pain relief can rarely be achieved with diet alone. As important as nutrition is, it’s also crucial to consult your doctor about other ways to gain flexibility and reduce pain. Physiotherapy can help to work with your dietary changes. Together, these changes address the inflammation that’s causing stiffness and discomfort. Contact NRG Athletes Physiotherapy Winnipeg, CA today to learn more about how physiotherapy and nutritional coaching can make a difference.

Strength Training for All Ages  

Strength training routines can benefit individuals of all ages. Whether it is used as physiotherapy after an injury or illness or as athletic therapy to help a young athlete build the strength and stamina they need to compete, it’s benefits are wide-ranging and long-term. Professionals who specialize in sports medicine understand the need to maintain physical strength and dexterity while on the field, but strength training offers benefits to individuals of all ages, including the elderly.

Strong Muscles, Strong Bones

One of the most profound benefits of strength training is the effect it has on the bones and connective tissues. As the muscles become stronger and more pressure is placed on the bones, they slightly flex causing them to take in more calcium. This additional calcium increases bone density and also strengthens the cartilage, tendons, and ligaments that allow joints to function correctly. This is one of the reasons athletic therapy is so important during the healing process. Strengthening the muscles not only helps the bones to heal, it also strengthens them and hastens the healing process.

Strength Training Supports Heart Function

Strong muscles also help to improve circulation. Keeping the body physically strong also helps to keep the heart toned as well. Because exercise encourages the muscles to massage the blood vessels and push the blood through the body, the heart is able to work more efficiently. It can pump blood faster and more easily, increasing both stamina and endurance. Physiotherapy for patients who are recovering from a heart problem may be encouraged to use mild strength training exercises to help restore the heart’s strength and tone. While the exercises must be approved by a medical professional, the benefits offered to the heart and circulatory system are well known.

Helps to Maintain Flexibility and Range of Motion

Keeping joints strong through the use of strength training exercises helps to maintain flexibility and range of motion. This is especially beneficial for the elderly who often lose their range of motion and flexibility as their level of physical strength decreases. Patients who have chronic illnesses that affect the joints and musculoskeletal structure of the body can use strength training to recover much of what is lost as their condition progresses. It’s important to start slow, but a patient can gradually rebuild their strength and improve their ability to move effectively.

Sports medicine and physiotherapy are not the only areas where strength training can prove to be effective. Anyone who is interested in increasing their vitality and improving their health can benefit from these types of exercises.

Call NRG Athletes Therapy Fitness today and speak with our experts!

 

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