What to Know About Arthritis?

Most people when they hear the term arthritis usually think that it is a disease associated with old age. This is so because most cases of joint problems are usually registered by the elderly.

However, it is inappropriate to regard it as an old age illness because it can affect anyone regardless of their age. Although old age is characterized with a decrease in strength of the joints, this alone can’t cause arthritis. 

There are several factors that can contribute to the development of the condition. This article covers some of the most important things about arthritis you should know about .

What is arthritis?

It is a condition that strikes the joints, specifically, the tissues hence interfering with the normal functioning. For example, the knees have a tissue between the two ends of the bones that serves to cushion them against shock. 

This is known as the cartilage. When the tissue gets damaged either by an injury or other mechanisms it leaves the bones vulnerable to the shock produced when one engages in an activity such as jumping. 

The result is that the bones will grind against each other thus causing lots of pain and also inhibiting smooth movement. If the issue is not addressed the bones will also wear down with time and make the situation worse.

Symptoms

The typical symptoms are pain and swelling. These are as a result of inflammation of the tissue leading to an obstruction of the various processes. The affected area can turn reddish in extreme cases. 

The pain can be intermittent or sharp. At times it only occurs when doing certain activities, for instance, climbing a staircase. Pain in the areas of ankle, back, fingers, hands, muscles, neck or wrist is common. 

The affected part can be tender or stiff and the range of motion will decrease as the illness progresses. See more here https://www.healthgrades.com/right-care/arthritis/7-things-to-know-about-arthritis 

Types

There are many types of arthritis. Each form causes different symptoms and may require different treatments. The typical ones are: 

  • Osteoarthritis- it’s characterized by wear and tear, which happens when the joint cartilage breaks down from recurrent stress. This is the most usual form. 
  • Gout- this develops when the uric acid form crystals in your body.
  • Rheumatoid – A condition wherein the immune system attacks thw synovial membranes in your body.
  • Ankylosing spondylitis – it occurs in the spine of one’s lower back. 
  • Juvenile (JA) – This is a disorder where tissue surrounding the joints is attached by the immune system. JA usually affects children under the age of 16. 
  • Psoriatic – this happens to people with autoimmune skin disorder like psoriasis. The inflammation causes skin irritation.

Causes

Different forms of the disease have different causes. For example, gout is the effect of high uric acid in your body. Some forms have unknown causes. They might be as a result of having a family history of the illness, certain autoimmune diseases or viral infections, sports or job that puts repetitive stress on your joints. Some of the risk factors include: 

  • Age 

The risk of many types of the diseases increases with age. 

  • Obesity

Carrying excess pounds puts stress on joints, especially, your knees, hips and spine. People with obesity have a higher risk of developing the illness. 

  • Sex

Women are more likely than men to develop rheumatoid arthritis, while, most of the people who have gout, which is another type of disease are men. 

Having a previous injury that didn’t heal properly is also a risk factor

Treatment

The medications vary depending on the type. The typical forms include:

  • Mainstream medications e.g. (NSAIDS) nonsteroidal anti -inflammatory drugs that can relieve pain and reduce inflammation.
  • Physical Therapy e.g. massage which relaxes tense muscles, stretching, and hydrotherapy using water to relieve pain
  • Surgery e.g. when you need specialized treatment that involves removal of a damaged part and replacing it with a better one. Click here to read more.

Conclusion

In conclusion, arthritis is a treatable and at times preventable disorder. If anyone is experiencing above symptoms its recommendable to visit a physician as soon as possible because the longer it takes to be treated, the more difficult it is to have a positive outcome. The long- term treatment is to slow or stop the disease process, particularly the joint damage which can be seen on X-rays. It affects millions of adults and only a few types can be cured. Health-care providers should always diagnose patients as soon as they get to realize the form of arthritis. The Leading Online Dispensary Canada.

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