Protect your joints. Don't keep your joints in the same position for a prolonged period of time. Balance your rest and work throughout the day. Use the strongest joints available for the job.
Stretch it. Stretching should be part of every arthritis patient's daily routine. A good stretch helps prevent injuries by warming up muscles and tendons which are more limber and less likely to tear. Spend at least 10 minutes each day stretching, and work for each major muscle group.
Cool it down. Stop physical activity. Rest in a cool/shaded environment. Spray with a mist of cool water or wrap an ice pack or cold compress in a towel and apply it to reduce arthritis pain and swelling.
Get moving. Exercise can help reduce joint pain and stiffness and increases flexibility and muscle strength. It can also help with weight control, stress management, and make you feel better overall. The Arthritis Foundation also offers water exercise and other classes.
Get a message. Massage therapy can relieve your pain, soothe stiff sore muscles, reduce inflammation and swelling. Make sure you use oil or cream on your fingers to make it more gentle. Work the area for five to ten minutes a day if possible.
Keep your weight in balance. Being overweight, even just moderately, impacts weight-bearing joints and can increase the pain of arthritis. Studies have indicated that losing extra weight lowers the risk for developing osteoarthritis of the knee. Losing weight can help slow the progression of arthritis too.
Get a diagnosis. If you are experiencing symptoms like pain, stiffness, swelling for more than 1 weeks, you should consider seeing your doctor and getting a diagnosis. Remember that there are more than 100 types of arthritis. It is important to get a specific diagnosis for the type of arthritis you have.
Take your medication the right way. Don't stop taking your medication just because you feel it is not working. Check with your doctor first. You need to understand that it may take several days to several months for a medication to become effective.
Look out for new options. Recently FDA has approved some new drugs for osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and other arthritic diseases. I feel that the current medication doesn't work well, check with your doctor about possible new options.
Keep educating yourself. It is important to learn something new about arthritis. Find some good websites online and subscribe to their newsletter if they have it. Join one of two active online arthritis communities like forums or bulletin board. Never hesitate to see your doctors and ask questions.