A rheumatoid arthritis flare-up occurs when the symptoms of the condition temporarily increase in intensity, explains Practical Pain Management. These exacerbated symptoms may include swollen joints, joint tenderness, morning stiffness, fatigue or fever, notes Mayo Clinic. Rheumatoid arthritis patients may also notice their joints are warm to the touch.Continue Reading
Any rheumatoid arthritis patient can experience a flare-up even if the condition is well-controlled, states Practical Pain Management. There are several steps patients can take in the midst of a flare-up to make themselves more comfortable. Getting mild exercise can help lessen the stiffness in the affected joints, thereby lessening pain. However, it is important to avoid engaging in strenuous forms of exercise. Walking and stretching are examples of exercises that are not too strenuous on the joints.
Steps toward minimizing stress are also helpful in managing flare-ups, according to Practical Pain Management. Getting a gentle massage and taking warm, relaxing baths are two simple ways to combat stress. Meditation techniques and deep-breathing exercises may also bring relief.
Foods that contribute to inflammation should be avoided during a flare-up, explains Practical Pain Management. Nightshade vegetables, such as potatoes and tomatoes, can worsen symptoms due to their alkaloid content. Highly processed foods, such as deli meats, and foods containing the sweetener aspartame are also problematic for rheumatoid arthritis patients.Learn more about Conditions & Diseases