Tips to Improve Your Orthopedic Health

Health has been the key focus for people of all ages. And as we grow older, the orthopedic issues also start taking control of our actions. These orthopedic health issues restrict our ability to move and be active and affect our very existence. Orthopedic health comprises of strong bones and joints so that physical incapacity and disability in movement is prevented.

The following orthopedic tips will help you adopt better lifestyles and adhere to appropriate diet so as to make your orthopedic health stronger.

Pay Attention to your Diet: You are what you eat. A healthy food regimen should focus on supplying the necessary nutrients for the bones and joints as you grow older. This diet should be balanced so that each meal provides the nutritional value as per the requirement. From the perspective of orthopedic health, you should pay attention to having the following vitamins and minerals in your food.

Pay attention to your diet

  1. Calcium: Our bones are made up of calcium and hence calcium rich food which includes dairy and milk products should be taken sufficiently to ensure your skeletal of bones is strong and healthy. Beans, lentils, almonds, leafy green vegetables are also rich sources of Calcium.
  2. Vitamin D: Vitamin D acts as a catalyst in the absorption of Calcium which then adds to the strength of bones. Sunlight is yet another trusted sources of Vitamin D so ensure spending some time (at least minutes) in the morning sun for absorbing the Vitamin D.
  3. Dietary Supplements: In case your body is excessively deficient in these minerals and vitamins or you are not able to get sufficient quantity through diet, then you should consider having dietary supplement with expert’s advice. Even then, you should concentrate on the above two dietary sources and not just give it completely to the supplements.
  4. Vitamin K: Vitamin K is also important as it works with Vitamin D to help the body absorb Calcium. It is an important component in building and maintaining the bone mass.

Limit your Bad Habits: 

Limit your bad habits

Smoking, drinking, caffeine should be consumed in moderation. Smoking prevents the absorption of Calcium, whereas more than 1-2 drinks a day may inhibit the absorption of Vitamin D. Similarly Coffee may not be harmful to bones directly but excessive consumption of caffeine may interfere with calcium absorption. Certain medications like steroids etc. may also prove to be harmful when used for longer duration.

Be Physically Active:

Be physically active

Simple exercises like stretching, walking, swimming and biking are good for all. In case you are already facing pain in your joints, then you should avoid any exercises which put excess stress on the joints for example deep knee bends. Another great way of improving orthopedic health is to start with stretching and warm up before exercising. This maintains flexibility and improves performance reducing the chances of injuries like sprains and strains.

People who are more active are less prone to osteoporosis. Similarly, women are more prone to osteoporosis than men and above the age of 50. With respect to bone density, you may adopt the ‘use it or lose it’ formula.

Adjust your Home and Work Environments:

Adjust your Home and Work Environments

People tend to continue with their discomforting routines as long as the pain alarm is not continuous. However, good posture is greatly responsible for maintaining the bones and joints in alignment such that the muscles are able to function properly. This aids to reduce wearing of joints, imposes less stress on ligaments and helps in strengthening the spine thereby reducing backaches.

For those who work on computers, the setup should be ergonomic. Despite this, one should take breaks often and type softly. This will keep their body joints active and avoid conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome.

As we grow older, the space should be comfortable enough to move around. It might require installation of handrails in broad areas, or having flooring which helps better grip and so on.

Sleep Posture: 

Sleep Posture

Sleeping is directly related to the relaxation of body. The sleeping posture should be such that it helps in maintaining the natural curvature of the spine. This can be done by lying down on your back and keeping a pillow under your knees or lying on one side while keeping your knees slight bent as in fetal position. Lumbar roll may also be helpful if you have the habit of sleeping on your back.

The Footwear:

The footwear

Your feet are wrapped around in the shoes most of the time. Hence it is important to pay attention to how you place your feet and what footwear your wear. Shoes should be comfortable and should support the foot so as to avoid cramping, deforming and pain. Wearing excessive heels as part of fashion should not get in the way of your orthopedic health.

Enjoy life with preventive care of your Orthopedic Health!

Common Risk Factors for Hip Replacement

hip replacement surgery

As the age passes by, the body starts expressing the effects of natural aging process in the form of deformities. When your joints start aching and do not support movement, you know that you are not just getting older, but there’s a need to take some actions which will help you to continue doing things that you love and enjoy life. A bad hip joint may be obstructing your way. Modern science has blessed humanity with advanced surgeries like total hip replacement to help you get over the pain and limiting movement. In reality, these replacement surgeries are not just related to the elderly, they are equally beneficial for people of all ages with a worn hip joint.

Hip Replacement

Hip is one such joint in the human body that if it is affected by arthritis, it leaves the person in constant suffering and pain, especially if the case involves osteoarthritis. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in four women and one in five men are exposed to lifetime risk of hip arthritis, which may require a hip replacement surgery for relief.

What are the risk factors that trigger a bad hip?

There can be several reasons which can contribute to a bad hip. Here are some of the risk factors highlighted by orthopedic specialists which are known to trigger a bad hip.

Developing Osteoarthritis in Hip: 

Arthritis is one of the most common causes for hip pain. This inflammation of joints is known to be worse when you wake up and gradually settles down as you start becoming active during the day. Further it begins to worsen with time.

Developing Osteoarthritis in Hip

Hip is supposed to be the most vulnerable joint in the body to develop arthritis, and osteoarthritis in particular. The risk of developing hip osteoarthritis prevails more in women than men. Yet as we grow older, the hips are getting weary and fatigued while carrying the most of our body weight daily. This imposes great pressure on the cartilage present in the joint area. As the cartilage degrades with excess weight and aging, the person gets the risk of having a constant complaint of pain in the hip region.

Excessive Body Weight and higher Body Mass Index (BMI):

BMI

BMI is a measure of body fat which is calculated from your weight in relation to your height. Higher BMI can be associated with an increased risk with the success of hip replacement surgery. Your body weight is largely supported by your limbs and hence excess weight adds to the strain that your hip joints are exposed to. This further adds to the risk of developing osteoarthritis. The outcome of this can be as severe as stopping your hip movement to the extent that the person starts avoiding your daily routine activities.

Family History of Arthritis:

Almost 50 percent of hip arthritis cases may be found related to inherited genetics. This can be either in the form of a family member with identified osteoarthritis problem or in the form of having genes for poor bone health, thereby causing the condition of arthritis.

A Hip Trauma in the Past:

In case you had faced a severe hip injury in the past, it might trigger your hip pain with aging. This may further increase your risk for osteoarthritis as well.

Amount of Physical Activity as Part of Daily Routine: 

Physical Activity

Walking, running, exercising, doing household chores and so on, are some types of the physical activities. Physical activity adds excessive strain on your hips. Thus there is higher chance of having the need for hip replacement. This excess strain also causes wear and tear in the hip joints thus resulting in constant ongoing pain. This exposes your hip joints to higher risk of injury and thereby the need for undergoing a hip replacement surgery later.

Benefits of Hip Replacement

Hip replacement surgery has been proven to offer great relief in pain and considerable mobility in patients who are suffering from osteoarthritis or inflammatory arthritis of the hip region. More than 90% of patients get relief from pain and the increased mobility for around 10 years and many of them would have it functioning even for 20 years.

Still, whenever you get a hip pain which doesn’t go away after your basic treatments like some exercises, local application of some gel or ointment for pain relief, it is highly recommended that you visit an orthopedic specialist for a consultation and explore the options suggested by the expert. However, no pain should be ignored and timely actions are a great help in keeping your body fit and active.

How to Prepare for Hip Replacement Surgery

Medical science is coming up with solutions and techniques which are helping in increasing the average lifespan and also improving the quality of old age. Hip Replacement Surgery is one such activity which is used when the hip joint is either worn out or sufficiently damaged to the extent that it starts to drastically reduce the mobility and gives the sensation of pain even while the person is resting.

hip relacement

The Cause

There are no defined rules for suggesting a hip replacement. However the most common reasons which lead to a hip replacement surgery as a treatment are:

  • Hip or Groin Pain: When a person gets soreness during or after the exercise or if the pain interferes with one’s daily routine, it is a clear indication of hip arthritis.
  • Stiffness: Stiffness in the hip shows up in the form of difficulty in wearing the shoes or socks. Generally the problem is seen more in one foot than the other.
  • Reducing movements: When one starts avoiding movements which make their overall mobility as less than what is essential, it is a sign of severe effect of hip arthritis.
  • One Leg Test: If your ability to stand on your problem leg is less than even a minute and this stands true even with the support of a side table or table top, then indeed the hip is badly damaged.

Preparations for Hip Replacement Surgery

When you have any of the above symptoms, you can consult an orthopedic surgeon for advice on hip replacement surgery. Caused by osteoarthritis or degenerative arthritis, this is amongst the most common surgical procedures done by orthopedic surgeons. Once the decision for getting your hip replaced has been made, you can take following steps towards preparing yourself for the surgery rather than being on the auto-pilot mode till the surgery day.

Know the procedure. Before hospitalization, you should gather related information like the type of joints to choose from, the recovery period etc.

Jot your questions. It is quite natural to have doubts and questions about the surgery. Jot down all of these questions and doubts and make sure to address them point by point with your doc in next appointment.

Get trained with physical therapy. Since the reduced mobility would have affected your muscles as well, you can approach your physical therapist pre-op wherein most people do this only post-op. This will help be stronger with the muscles to help support the movements and gear up with faster recovery.

Lose weight. In case of obesity, it is a great way to decrease the chances of post-surgical complications. It also reduces recovery time since the overall load that needs to be borne by the newly placed joint is lesser.

Ergonomic Sitting. Proper seating is necessary so as to start with necessary movement with care and comfort. A firm chair with arms and a high seat to sit is most suitable place to sit with comfort after surgery.  In case of staircase, the side railing is indeed helpful.