There are many symptoms of menopause that can have a significant effect on a person’s life. From hot flashes to anxiety, there are challenges that must be overcome. Although it doesn’t impact everyone, there is a clear link between menopause and joint pain. Let’s delve into how the two are connected.
Link Between Menopause and Joint Pain
Estrogen is a hormone produced in women that serves many purposes. For instance, it's responsible for reducing inflammation in the body and protecting joints. As a result, during menopause when estrogen levels fall, there’s a good chance that joint pain will be the outcome. Another potential result is osteoarthritis, which can sometimes become debilitating. A person that has osteoarthritis will experience swelling in the joints, which further contributes to the pain felt during menopause.
Identifying Menopausal Joint Pain
Fortunately, joint pain caused by menopause doesn’t typically last throughout the day. It’s more common for the problem to worsen when joints have not been active for a long period of time, which usually occurs at night. It’s the reason why joints hurt in the morning. The pain is often minimized later in the day when you’ve walked around a bit. Movement can actually reduce swelling and stiffness in joints.
Eating the Right Foods
It’s always important to have a nutrient-dense diet. The food that you eat directly affects how you feel. When addressing the issue of menopause and joint pain, there are ways to boost bone health. In fact, having a well-balanced diet can fight off some of the symptoms of menopause, which means there’s a chance that you won’t even experience some issues. While it depends on your unique situation, foods like protein, vegetables and fruits can make the symptoms of menopause less obvious.
Benefits of Exercise
Without a doubt, joint pain associated with menopause can be mitigated with daily exercise. Movement is not only good for your joints, it can also help to decrease many of the other symptoms associated with menopause, such as stress, fatigue and depression. The goal should be consistent and low-impact exercise. This can include walking, yoga, swimming or any other type of exercise that won’t be hard on your joints. You’ll want to avoid rigorous routines that can make the issue worse.
Bad habits will need to cease if you want to reduce the chances of joint pain during menopause. For instance, smoking is an issue that can cause a wide variety of health problems that can increase the symptoms of menopause. In fact, smoking elevates your risk of cancer, heart disease and diabetes. The existence of these conditions can make joint paint much worse.
In serious instances of joint pain caused by menopause, it might be necessary to see a physician regarding surgical solutions. While this isn’t altogether common, some orthopedic doctors will recommend procedures for knees and other joints that might be seriously impacted by menopause. This usually occurs when the pain levels are exceptionally high.
When it comes to menopause and joint pain, there are also non-surgical solutions that might work just as well. Either way, it’s best to visit your doctor for a complete assessment and diagnosis of any issues that exist.