What Makes Osteoarthritis Worse

Fizzy drinks are now on the list of what makes osteoarthritis worse.

Fizzy drinks are now on the list of what makes osteoarthritis worse.

This question of what makes osteoarthritis worse does not have a simple answer. It depends on which joint is affected and your lifestyle.

However I will endeavor to give you a reasonable overview. Please note this is about what makes your osteoarthritis worse, not what makes your symptoms worse!

This is an overview list with a few links to other articles if you want to know more about that topic.

If you want individual help please leave a message in the comments below or contact me direct.

List Of What Makes Osteoarthritis Worse

1. If your joint is weight bearing then excessive weight will make it worse. Losing even a few pounds can help reduce the pain you suffer.

2. A poor diet can make osteoarthritis worse. When you have OA the muscles, tendons and ligaments around the joint become inflamed. Some foods can inflame the inflammation. You can read more about that here. Interestingly fizzy drinks has been added to the list of what makes osteoarthritis worse.

3. Lack of exercise. Our joints need to be exercised. This helps in several ways; it improves circulation, it squashes the fluid around inside our joints which feeds the cartilage (cartilage has no blood supply), it stretches and strengthens the soft tissue so it can work better.

4. High impact exercise– avoid this if you Have OA in a weight bearing joint.

5. Repetitive movements– avoid these.

6. Your genes– not that you can do a lot about those!

That’s What Makes Osteoarthritis Worse But Improves It?

Very little unfortunately  There is plenty we can do to relieve the pain and stiffness but the only way to actually cure your osteoarthritis is to get a joint replacement or resurfacing.

You can, however, decrease the rate of the degeneration by reducing the inflammation and getting the joint to function as best it can. To find out how to do this sign up for my free course on Pain Management for Osteoarthritis.


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6 Responses to What Makes Osteoarthritis Worse

  1. john says:

    I work in the granite countertop field. a lot of heavy lifting and a lot of side to side movement. this causes a lot of pain. is this kind of work making my osteoarthritis worse. if i keep doing this kind of work will my or get worse faster or do i need to change my work to prolong my condition. thanks john

    • Dr. Sophie says:

      Hi John, You don’t say where your OA is. As a general rule of thumb yes if you continue to stress a joint with OA with heavy lifting then it will deteriorate quicker. If you do an exercise program this will counter it a bit but probably not completely. Let me know what joint you have OA in by leaving another comment and I can be more specific about what you should or shouldn’t do. Cheers. Sophie

  2. Chuck Hackett says:


    The last two discs in my back are pretty bad with arthritis and I’m quite overweight at this point. I own a window cleaning business and have to be on a ladder a lot, but what hurts the most is carrying my 5 gallon bucket of water around. Actually, just standing alone hurts quite a bit. I can only stand for around 10 to 15 minutes before I have to sit and rest my back for a couple of minutes. Just last year I could stand for over an hour at a time, so things seem to be getting much worse. Wil steroid injections help? Or anything else? I’m only 56, so I’m far from retirement age. Thanks.

    • Dr. Sophie says:

      Hi Chuck, that sounds nasty and yes it is a progressive condition but not usually that quickly. The first thing you must realise is that there is no cure at the moment so you must learn to manage it.

      Your weight is certainly not helping. If you consider how increasing the weight of carrying something aggravates your back then carrying excessive weight has the same effect. So that is the first thing you must address if you want to get improve things.

      Steroid injections give some people short term pain relief but they wear off and you are back to square one again. You are limited usually to 3 maximun due to the side effects so really they are not a long term solution.

      There are lots of things you can do to help yourself. I have a Kindle book on Amazon (you can read it on any device in case you don;t have a Kindle) and you can find that here. It is a good starter book outlining what you can do without risking long term effects of overmedicating.

      I hope that gives you a starting point. Please feel free to contact me direct with any questions you have at sophie@theonlinearthritisclinic.com

  3. Steve Doran says:

    Does playing guitar make authority is worse my finger joints hurt and swell ,I haven’t been diagnosed yet can you help

    • Dr. Sophie says:

      Yes it will. You need to warm up well before playing and use ice/cold afterwards. That should help with any swelling or inflammation.

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