Keep moving through the winter months

OSTEOARTHRITIS sufferers are urged to keep moving through the winter months - the best remedy for symptoms could be just a step away.

Healthcare professionals are urging people with osteoarthritis to do away with plans for hibernation this winter, after new research from Voltaren® has revealed more than two thirds (68 per cent) of sufferers of chronic joint pain related to ageing or osteoarthritis are exercising less than they used to - despite exercise being a core pain management strategy.

In fact, the Voltaren® Osteo Gel Keep Moving Report found the majority (76 per cent) of respondents experiencing chronic joint pain related to ageing or osteoarthritis are not using exercise and weight training to help manage their symptoms.

Osteoarthritis is the most common chronic joint disease, affecting 1.8 million Australians nationwide.

Symptoms may include pain with joint movement, joint stiffness or swelling, or reduced mobility of the joint.

Alex Bongers, Melbourne pharmacist, said, "As the temperature begins to drop, people have a tendency to slow down.

"As healthcare professionals we recognise that motivation is reduced which in turn impacts exercise routines.

"Exercise is key in the management of OA, which means it is more important than ever to keep moving this winter."

Osteoarthritis is a condition where the cartilage that protects the end of the bones is no longer efficiently repaired.

As cartilage is degraded, the bone previously protected by cartilage gradually loses its normal shape and bony spurs may develop on the edges of the joint.

The rough, uneven surfaces rub together causing pain. Osteoarthritis guidelines recommend a combination of medication, exercise, weight loss and education to manage symptoms.

Your doctor or pharmacist will be able to help you reduce the impact osteoarthritis has on your lifestyle, as well as providing up-to date advice on pain management recommendations.

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