Ankle arthritis can have a dramatic impact on your life. When your ankles are stiff and painful, it's difficult to climb stairs, enjoy an after-arthritisdinner stroll or even stand in line at the grocery store. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to decrease your arthritis pain. Dr. Mark Moss of Coastal Foot & Ankle Associates in Houston and Pearland, TX, shares a few tips that will help you deal with ankle arthritis.

Make some lifestyle changes

Although it's hard to give up favorite activities, making a switch to a low-impact form of exercise can protect your joints and ease your pain. When you substitute swimming or biking for running, you'll be able to work out without triggering a flareup of your painful symptoms. Consider making a few other changes to your normal routine, such as bringing a folding chair to your children's or grandchildren's soccer games or taking the elevator or escalator instead of the stairs.

Visit the foot doctor

When pain begins to control your life or walking has become increasingly difficult, a visit to our Houston or Pearland office may be a good idea. Depending on the extent and severity of your condition, we'll recommend one or more therapies designed to decrease your pain and increase your activity level. Physical therapy can improve range of motion and strengthen the muscles that support your ankle, while corticosteroid injections may decrease your pain.

Wearing custom-designed orthotics in your shoes or braces that support your ankles may also increase your comfort. Some people also benefit from injections that lubricate the joints. In many cases, a single injection can provide relief for up to six months.

If conservative treatment methods aren't effective, we may recommend arthroscopic surgery to remove diseased cartilage. Combining arthroscopic surgery with a cartilage implant with stem cells offers even more benefits than traditional arthroscopic surgery. Surgery may also be needed to remove bone spurs, reposition the ankle joint, fuse the bones in the joint or replace your arthritic ankle joint with an implant.

Podiatric treatments offer effective relief for ankle arthritis. If you're tired of suffering with arthritis pain, schedule an appointment with foot doctor Dr. Moss, by calling (281) 484-2400 for the Houston office or (281) 485-2988 for the Pearland office.

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