Mild symptoms of osteoarthritis of the hip generally do not impact daily life functioning. In general, minor pain and stiffness are easy to cope with, leading to periods of discomfort that are relatively easy to control. You will likely experience mild symptoms for quite some time before your osteoarthritis gets worse. In fact, some people with mild osteoarthritis of the hip will not experience more distressing symptoms until much later in life [source: NIAMS]. That said, you should not ignore mild osteoarthritis symptoms. Various lifestyle changes and treatments can greatly decrease the progression of your osteoarthritis.
The first signs of osteoarthritis of the hip typically include minor pain or stiffness when waking up. You may experience minor pain and stiffness in the groin, buttock or thigh regions [source: AAOS]. You may feel an increase in pain with increased activity and a relief in pain during periods of rest [source: NIAMS]. Your joint stiffness will likely disappear after a few minutes of hip movement, such as walking. You may also periodically experience swelling or redness around the hip area. Periodic joint weakness or instability, especially when walking or going up stairs, is also a common complaint [source: ABC Health and Wellbeing]. Pay particular attention to this when walking on slippery surfaces or on bumpy terrain.
Mild osteoarthritis of the hip can usually be managed with nondrug treatments. Exercise and weight control are especially important. The less weight you're carrying around, the less wear and tear on your hip joints. Try relieving pain, stiffness and swelling with heat and cold treatments, massage, acupuncture and dietary supplements. Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory and pain relief medications may also prove helpful in reducing pain and swelling [source: NIAMS]. You can continue living your regular life with mild osteoarthritis of the hip. Remain active, control minor pain and swelling, and your worries about your condition will dissipate.