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How Water Can Improve Your Joint Health

We've all heard it before…"drink more water." Whether you don't like the taste or simply forget, getting the recommended amount of water can be a challenge. But what if water could actually help reduce pain? When it comes to joint health, water plays a critical role in reducing debilitating joint pain that many people experience. 

Joint issues can cause pain or inflammation in any part of a joint (cartilage, bone, muscle). Arthritis is a common condition that can cause severe joint pain, swelling, and stiffness. It is estimated that over 54 million people in the United States suffer from joint pain caused by arthritis. But no matter what the reason for the pain, it's nice to know that adding water can offer great benefits. Our joints are made up of cartilage, and cartilage is 60% water. When cartilage loses water, it can't function properly. Consider the following reasons why water is essential to your joint health:

1. Lubricate Joints
Synovial fluid is a substance produced within the cavities of synovial joints that reduces friction between the cartilage and joints as the body moves. This fluid is primarily composed of water and is vital in maintaining joint flexibility and function. 

2. Reduce Pain
When we need water, we are thirsty. When our joints need water, they ache. When you drink water, joint inflammation decreases and blood circulation increases. Water also supports your immune system, helping your body to recover from pain faster.
3. Prevents Stiffness
Joint pain can cause stiffness and limited movement, making simple tasks increasingly difficult. Water keeps your joints mobile by reducing inflammation and stimulating the growth of new cells within the cartilage tissues, which can make moving around much less painful.

Bonus Water Tip: Swimming
Now you know how drinking water improves joint pain. However, spending time in water can also improve joint health. Swimming is a great exercise for those suffering from joint pain, as it's a zero-gravity impact sport. This activity allows you to exercise different muscle groups and increase your range of motion all while reducing the pull of gravity on your joints. 

Are you suffering from joint pain? Are you finding it difficult to find remedies that reduce pain? Click to schedule an appointment with McLean County Orthopedics today or call 309-663-6461.
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