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Why does my RA pain vary in how long before it starts?

Any guesses about why my left hip arthritis becomes painful (not too bad) after 6 or 7 hours of sleep (following Voltaren application), but does not bother me all day, even while sitting, skiing, etc? I apply Voltaren when I get up in AM and I rarely feel any pain till early evening.

I sleep on my LEFT side, same side as arthritis. I am a 78 y.o. white male in generally good health. Got dx of arthritis 9 months ago.

  1. Sorry to hear you're experiencing some discomfort in your hip. Being newly diagnosed and adjusting to all of the body changes can be troublesome. I hope others can chime in and share their experience with this similar issue. In the meantime, I'd like to share with you an article that my offer some insight- I can say that hip problems are fairly uncommon in those newly diagnosed, so if you haven't brought this concern up wot your doctor I'd encourage you to do so. Hope you get some resolve soon! All the best, Latoya (Team Member)

    1. Hi, . I don't have any great answers as to why your hip hurts more at night, but I have a couple of guesses. One is that the constant movement actually *helps* with the joint pain and stiffness. I know that sounds counterintuitive, but think of it like having been warmed up for exercise. Or even warming up an oven. I know that sounds silly, but your body is already in the 'movement' mind, so it's easier for it to keep moving. Whereas, when you have been inactive for many hours and possibly in the same position for hours, your body is not in the movement space. The liquid in your joints is cooled down, if that makes sense. That's why many people feel stiff and sore in the morning, and not just people with OA or RA. Neal Schon, the former lead guitarist of Journey, has battled AS (Ankylosing Spondylitis), an arthritic autoimmune condition, for many years. He has said in interviews that he has to play guitar every single day to keep his fingers as agile as possible and if he skips a day, the stiffness really starts settling into his joints and affecting his ability to play.

      Also, there's something to be said for just not noticing any twinges as much when we are going about our days and focusing on other things. But, when you first open your eyes in the morning and the first thing you register is a sore hip, well, there's not much to distract you from that!

      These aren't the most medical guesses, but I think there's something to it.

      I hope you get more helpful feedback and thanks for indulging my thoughts on this!

      Best, Erin, Team Member.

      1. Thank you, Erin. This all sounds plausible. This is not a major problem, since the pain is not very bad, and I apply Voltaren when I get up.

        1. , and can I just say I love that you still ski? I could never get the hang of it, even when I was young. So, it's one of those skills that I always admire in other people. Do you prefer cross country or downhill?

          Best, Erin, Team Member.

      2. I am 78 y.o., downhill skier, skiing with 2 Donjoy knee braces and almost no cartilage in either knee, still skiing the steeps. Lots of old geezers still ski. IMO downhill skiing involves a lot of learning about what to do with your various body parts, esp. knees, though of course once you "get it" it all becomes instinctive. I am not a "natural athlete" so it took me quite a few years to get it.

        1. , my father still does downhill skiing at age 74. I think I didn't get his athleticism or grace. I am that person on the slopes that takes out people in the ski lift line when I wipe out. It's not pretty.

          I am glad there are plenty of 'old geezers' still out on the slopes. It reminds us younger folks that there's no excuse for not staying active 😉

          Best, Erin, Team Member.

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