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Arthritis pain can be decreased by increasing your activity level

May 04, 2007

Arthritis is a leading cause of disability in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 46 million adults are affected by arthritis. About 50 percent of Georgia seniors experience some form of arthritis, according to the 2006 Georgia Arthritis Report.

The good news is that studies have shown that regular physical activity in persons with arthritis decreases pain, improves function, and delays disability. A recent study conducted in Australia suggests that simply adding some walking and moderate activity to your life can have a big benefit. According to findings recently published in the journal Arthritis Research & Therapy, even exercising as little as one hour and 15 minutes a week now can make a difference over the next three years.

"May is Arthritis Awareness Month, and the Georgia Department of Human Resources (DHR) is taking this opportunity to spread the word that people who have arthritis can lead healthy and independent lives by becoming more physically active, eating healthy and incorporating healthy living into their daily lives," says Stuart Brown, director of DHR's division of Public Health.

"Physical activity is important for everyone, especially people with arthritis. It reduces joint pain and stiffness and increases flexibility and muscle strength. Of course, you should check with your healthcare provider before beginning any type of physical activity program," said Brown.

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