Water therapy is an ancient remedy that still offers wonderful health benefits, especially for people who suffer from arthritis. In fact, there is a large body of research that demonstrates the many benefits of warm water and aqua therapy for people with musculoskeletal problems. If you suffer from arthritis, back pain, or even fibromyalgia, you may find that water therapy provides some of the symptom relief your body craves.
Warm Water and Arthritis Pain
Research shows that soaking in warm water for about twenty minutes can reduce arthritis pain. One way that water therapy works is by reducing the gravity and weight on painful joints. Instead, your joints are treated to complete support by the buoyancy of the water. Not only does this immersion technique increase circulation, but it also reduces swelling and inflammation of the affected joints. The water also helps restrain the muscles for sufferers, which provides some level of relief from painful symptoms. People may feel relief soon after initiating their water therapy session and this relief often lasts for a period beyond immersion.
Water Therapy and Exercise
You may have heard that swimming is a great exercise, but simply moving through water can provide arthritis sufferers with effective fitness. Many people with arthritis cannot perform exercises on hard ground but are able to perform them in water because of the support that the water provides. The buoyancy in water allows people with arthritis to exercise, which is essential for overall health. Exercising improves circulation to the joints and muscles as well. Without water therapy, many people who suffer from arthritis would be unable to participate in fitness regimens that complement their health without experiencing a great deal of pain.
Water Therapy Tips
First, you might want to discuss your plans for water therapy with your physician so he or she can be aware of your fitness plans and can help keep tabs on how the therapy works for you. You will also need to find a heated pool in your vicinity. Many physical therapy facilities have them, but your healthcare provider should be able to give you some information about heated pools in your area where water therapy takes place.
It’s important that you remember that warm water is key for therapeutic benefits. The hot water of a hot tub, for instance, is too hot for this type of treatment. Water that is too hot can place stress on your heart. Because you will be moving and likely performing some exercise, you should avoid hot water.
When immersing yourself in warm water, be sure to move around. Even though it can be quite relaxing and pleasurable simply to float, you should try to exercise to obtain the health benefits associated with movement and to improve circulation. Moving around in the warm water will ease your stiff joints and muscles. Try to manage some gentle stretching while you’re in the water as well.
If you suffer from arthritis, you should consider trying water therapy. This ancient remedy has been soothing the aches and pains of arthritis sufferers for centuries. You may find that it works wonders for you too.