Therapy Pool Arthritis Hand Exercises

arthritishandsHands are so important for our daily living. We use them for pretty much all our daily activities. Unfortunately, more than 52.5 million Americans suffer from some form of arthritis. Both forms of arthritis, rheumatoid and osteoarthritis, are painful and can especially impact the hands.

Simply moving these stiff, painful joints in warm water for ten minutes is a great relaxing way to derive therapeutic benefit. Medical research has suggested that water immersion can significantly reduce inflammation and pain due to rheumatoid or osteoarthritis. These following strengthening and flexibility exercises can help us maintain agility and dexterity with our fingers as well as give us greater grip strength.

Stretch your fingers out strongly and then close them into fists, holding for a few seconds. Doing this several times is a good way to stretch and strengthen your finger muscles. You can do this exercise above ground or in the water. If you want to build the strength of your grip further you can use specialized grip strengthening tools or even a tennis ball.

Another great exercise is making cat claws. Curling your fingers so that they just touch the palm of your hand and holding for several seconds is a great way to flex your finger joints. Again, soaking your hands in warm water will help ease the pain and improve blood circulation to the hands.

To build flexibility into your fingers, you can lay your hand on a flat surface. Then, from your thumb to your little finger you can raise each fingers one by one upwards holding in the air for about ten seconds while pressing down with the other fingers and palm of the hand. This brief exercise can help build finger flexibility.

We use our hands daily and strong hands assist us with many daily activities from opening difficult jar lids to gardening to typing up emails. Healthy finger joints allow us a better quality of life. Taking care of them will allow us to maintain independence and enjoyment well into our later years.