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Osteoarthritis is a degenerative condition that can affect anyone.

Whilst there is no definitive root cause as to why some people get OA and some don’t, there are a number of contributing factors, which when combined can increase the likelihood of you experiencing the condition at some stage in your life.

A number of items identified as preventative measures are also considered treatment options in order to slow down the degradation of the knee joint and ultimately delay the need for surgery in the long term and these are:

  • Watching your weight
  • Eating the right foods
  • Keeping active
  • Wearing the right shoes

Watching your weight

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is important full stop.

When considering the knee joint, the heavier you are the greater the stress imposed on the joint, which in time can have a negative effect. If you like running then these stresses are amplified. If you lose a few pounds then that is a few less pounds of stress on the knee joints.

Watching your weight can not only help your knee joints but your overall wellbeing, giving you more energy and helping you to feel fitter, healthier and ready for action.

To find out if you’re a healthy weight check out the NHS BMI Healthy Weight Calculator.

Prevention - Preventing Osteoarthritis - OA Knee Pain Exercise will help you stay fit, healthy and also lose weight

Eating the right foods

This goes hand in hand with maintaining a healthy weight.

If you have a poor diet then it’s harder to maintain your weight, regardless of exercise, not to mention the impact on your body from eating things which don’t carry the necessary nutrients and vitamins.

Long term there is also a risk of experiencing diabetes, with the latest research suggesting it is a contributing factor of osteoarthritis.

When looking at the right foods you should focus on vitamin C and D, which are known to improve cartilage development, along with omega-3 and spices which can work to decrease inflammation.

For more information on selecting the right foods visit our nutrition page.

Prevention - Preventing Osteoarthritis - OA Knee Pain Eating the right food is important

Keeping active

It may sound counterintuitive when suffering from knee pain to be told to exercise but this releases endorphins into the body which act as natural painkillers.

When considering exercise as a preventative measure you can consider low impact sports whilst also working on strengthening exercises.

Running is a high impact activity, whereas swimming or cycling can still offer a great workout without putting as much strain on the knee joints.

The knee joint is extremely important but by strengthening the leg muscles you can reduce the strain on the joint itself. Working on your hamstrings and quads mean that these muscles will take some of the strain when you’re active to help reduce the stress on the knee. Yoga is also a great way of improving your flexibility.

There are a variety of exercises available from flexibility and stretching to aerobic to muscle strengthening available on our knee exercises page.

Prevention - Preventing Osteoarthritis - OA Knee Pain Staying active will keep you healthy

Wearing the right shoes

Shoes can be a modifying factor when it comes to minimising pain and maximising your ability to get out and about and do things.

Wearing the wrong shoes can exacerbate problems that already exist and can cause complications and long term damage to a variety of joints, muscles, tendons and ligaments beyond the feet. Wearing the right shoes can eliminate or reduce foot pain, which also affects the body’s mobility and function.

For more information visit our footwear page.

The things mentioned above are not just things to consider to potentially avoid (or delay the onset of) osteoarthritis but things we should be doing anyway in order to look after our bodies.

For more information on getting started with a healthy lifestyle visit the NHS get fit for free pages.

Prevention - Preventing Osteoarthritis - OA Knee Pain Selecting the right footwear is important
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#

How Does Age Affect People's Experiences Of OA?


​When we think about arthritis, there is a tendency to categorise it as an old person’s disease. We envision the little old lady struggling to make it across the road or the old man with a walking stick. But the reality couldn’t be further from the truth. There are thought to be around 10 million people living in the UK with the disease and these cover a range of ages from children right up to those over the age of 65.

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How Does The Body Clock Affect The Development Of OA


Various factors can affect our body clocks but this is usually a temporary situation. A series of late nights, shift patterns that change and long flights can produce temporary effects such as mood changes and sleep disruption. We commonly refer to this as jet lag and do not view it as a serious problem but it is now widely recognised that our biological clocks are also important to our general well-being and health.

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How Does Obesity Affect Your Risk Of OA Knee Pain


​Obesity has been known to be a serious health problem for many years, but the impact that being overweight can have on your knees is not always recognised. Seriously obese people are fourteen times more likely to develop osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee than people whose weight is within healthy parameters, so it follows that maintaining a healthy weight can reduce your risk of knee pain due to this disease.

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What Are The Differences Between OA And Other Types Of Arthritis?


​There are over 100 different types of arthritis. The most common include osteoarthritis (OA), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), psoriatic arthritis (PsA), ankylosing spondylitis (AS), fibromyalgia and gout. Although there are many similarities between the different types of arthritis and the pain they cause, knowing which type you have can make the difference between successful treatment or further debilitation.

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Where Can I Turn to For Support For OA Knee Pain


Osteoarthritis causes increasing joint pain and stiffness in the knee. Tenderness and swelling are also likely to be present. This may be particularly the case immediately after you wake up, after overusing your knee, or when resting.

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How Can Tai Chi Help People With OA Knee Pain


​There is proof that the martial art tai chi can help with the symptoms and pain of knee osteoarthritis (OA). We look at the evidence below and explain how tai chi can improve the condition.

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The Effect Of Weather On OA Knee Pain


​Many of us are familiar with stories of people with injuries or joint conditions claiming to be able to predict the weather based upon their pain and stiffness. Whilst they are often met with polite nodding or even ridicule, there is evidence that there may be a genuine link between weather conditions and levels of pain. There is a growing body of research looking at the effect of weather on OA knee pain, but the results are far from conclusive.

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The Mental Health Impact Of OA Knee Pain


​Any injury to the knee can be particularly painful. This includes the mobility issues that often arise from osteoarthritis. As the knee is so important when standing or walking, damage to the joint can have a negative impact on your ability to accomplish day-to-day tasks. It is not, however, just the physical discomfort that can make life more difficult. As with any long-term injury, chronic pain in the knee can have a negative effect on mental health. For example, it can increase the likelihood of experiencing depression or anxiety.