How to Avoid Cartilage Loss

Baked salmon with honey-mustard sauce and potato gratinCartilage is the firm but flexible connective tissue that acts as padding in your shoulder, hips, knees and other joints. It buffers the ends of the adjoining bones to keep them from rubbing together. If cartilage begins to wear away, it causes pain and stiffness and can eventually lead to osteoarthritis.

Knee pain is the most common complaint of people who visit an orthopaedic surgeon. Cartilage lacks a blood supply, so it has limited ability to regenerate. Preserving cartilage with these tips is the best way to prevent knee problems down the road.

  • Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight places an excessive burden on your knees, causing cartilage to erode more rapidly.
  • Invest in quality footwear. Shoes that are supportive and fit well help with proper alignment and balance, reducing pressure on the knee joints. Make sure you wear the correct footwear when running, walking or participating in other activities that can add stress to your knees.
  • Perform regular stretching. Tightness in muscles, tendons and ligaments restricts movement, making it a primary cause of knee injuries.
  • Keep moving. Do you work at a computer all day and go home to watch your big-screen TV? Your body was not meant to be sedentary. Get regular physical activity to keep your muscles and joints strong and healthy. If you work at a desk, make it a point to get up and take walking breaks.
  • Include salmon in your diet. Salmon, mackerel and other cold water fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which have anti-inflammatory properties that can relieve soreness.
  • Don’t ignore knee pain. It’s your body’s way of warning that there is a problem. Early treatment of injuries can prevent a small issue from developing into a big one that’s not as easily repaired.

An orthopaedic surgeon can advise you on proper care of knees and discuss options for safe and effective treatment of damage you may have experienced. Contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our orthopaedic professionals.

 

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