What is Arthritis?
Arthritis is a disorder in the joints caused by inflammation. There are more than 100 forms of arthritis. It is a very common condition affecting people from all walks of life and all ages (although it is most prevalent in the aged). The symptoms have a big impact on suffers’ lives, however there are many simple measures one can take to help manage the symptoms.
Common types of Arthritis
Also called degenerative joint disease, this is the most common type of arthritis, which occurs most often in older people. This disease affects cartilage, the tissue that cushions and protects the ends of bones in a joint. It causes joint pain and can limit a person’s normal movement.
An autoimmune disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis (or RA) mostly affects the hands and feet. It can cause pain, stiffness, swelling, and loss of function in joints. When severe, rheumatoid arthritis can deform, or change, a joint.
Symptoms of Arthritis
Symptoms can include pain and limited functionality of one or more joints. Inflammation of the joints can cause joint stiffness, swelling, redness, feeling warm to the touch and tenderness in the area.
Diagnosis of arthritis
There are many different types of arthritis, it is important that you seek a diagnosis if you suspect you have the condition. Treatment, especially medication, can differ greatly between different forms of arthritis. A correct diagnosis can mean you get the most appropriate care. Make an appointment to speak with your Doctor who will advise the best course of action.
Medication for Arthritis
There is no cure for arthritis.
The medication your doctor prescribes will depend on your type of arthritis and the severity of your symptoms. It is important to discuss any medication or other treatment with your doctor so as treatment can be monitored.
The are many ways to manage arthritis
• Stay Active ….physical activity can maintain muscle, strength and flexibility
• Manage Pain ….. learn what works best for you
• Diet ….. a healthy and well balanced diet is good for general health and will go a long way to keeping weight under control. Any additional weight will put more stress on the joints.
• Protect the Joints…. find out about aids, equipment and gadgets that can make day to day tasks much easier and less painful.