Loosen Up Those Stiff Joints

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Nothing like waking up as an unsalted pretzel.

Whether you suffer from rheumatoid arthritis or just live a very sedentary lifestyle, you’re probably no stranger to waking up in the morning with stiff, potentially painful joints. It’s one thing if you wake up in the morning and all of your joints pop loudly and in rapid succession. Popping joints, by themselves, isn’t anything to worry about. You should be concerned, however, if that popping is accompanied by pain or swelling, or worse, you’re not able to pop your joints and they’re stuck in stiff, painful positions.

If you’re suffering from frequent stiff, painful joints, there are a few tricks you can employ, both in your morning routine and throughout the day, to alleviate things a bit. For one thing, as soon as you wake up, but before you get out of bed, do some simple stretches under your covers. Rotate your wrists and ankles and bend your knees and elbows. Afterward, go take a nice hot shower. Warm water will relax and loosen up your muscles, allowing your joints to flow more freely.

During the day, try to get up and move yourself around whenever you can. As I mentioned, staying sedentary causes your joints and muscles to stick in place, so keep things loose and active to prevent them from getting frozen up. You should also be careful about what you eat, as certain foods can cause inflammation in your joints, especially if eaten close to bedtime.

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Speaking of bedtime, that’s the most important factor in joint health. You need to get a good night’s sleep every night, and you need to do it on a mattress that meets your body’s needs for softness and/or firmness. If your mattress doesn’t support you properly, you’ll end up in a weird sleeping position, which can strain your joints.