Ankylosing Spondylitis Treatment
Aerobic exercise is the type of activity that gets your heart pumping faster and keeps your heart rate elevated for a while. To reach or maintain a healthy fitness level, it is important to get at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise (also called cardiovascular exercise) three times a week. Aerobic exercises work the large muscles of the body and include brisk walking, jogging, and swimming.
If you are dealing with back problems caused by ankylosing spondylitis, you should avoid exercise that requires twisting or vigorous forward flexion, such as aerobic dancing and rowing, because these actions may raise pressure in the discs and actually do more harm than good. If back pain or your fitness level makes it impossible to exercise 30 minutes at a time, try three 10-minute sessions to start with and work up to your goal.
People with ankylosing spondylitis face both emotional and physical challenges. Among the things that can increase the stress level of a person with this condition are the emotions he or she feels as a result of the disease (including fear, anger, and frustration) and any pain or physical limitations he or she may have.
Although there is no evidence that stress plays a role in causing ankylosing spondylitis, it can make living with the disease difficult at times. Stress may also affect the amount of pain a person feels. There are a number of effective techniques for coping with stress.
A few of the things that can help relieve stress include:
- Regular rest periods
- Visualization exercises.
Exercise programs, participation in support groups, and good communication with the healthcare team are other ways to reduce stress.