Arthritis is a term used to describe a variety of diseases that affect the joints of the body. Arthritis is extremely common throughout the United States, with an estimated 54 million people afflicted with some type of the disease. The following paragraphs will discuss this disease in more detail, as well as outline what can be done to alleviate its devastating effects.
What is Arthritis?
Arthritis is a broad group of diseases and disorders that affect the joints of the body in some manner. There are over 100 documented types of arthritis, and it remains one of the leading causes of deformity and disability in our country. The most commonly recognized form of the disease is osteoarthritis, which most often affects the elderly population. Arthritis can affect all age groups, however, but it remains slightly more common in women than in men.
What are the Symptoms of Arthritis?
Symptoms of arthritis can vary slightly depending on the type being referred to. The most common symptom associated with all forms of the disease is a pain in the joints. This pain can be mild, moderate, or severe and will often get significantly worse over a period of time. Other symptoms include a limited range of motion, swelling of the joints, warmth or tenderness in the joints, and stiffness (HealthGrades).
What are the Risk Factors Associated with Arthritis?
Risk factors for the development of arthritis vary slightly depending on which type is being referenced. In the case of osteoarthritis, for example, just the process of getting older can be a risk factor for developing the disease. Other risk factors include being overweight, suffering joint injuries in the past, having a family history of the disease, or working in certain occupations that repetitively strain the joints. While having one or more risk factors doesn’t automatically mean you’ll get the disease, they increase your odds of being one of the 54 million Americans currently dealing various forms of arthritis.
Self-help Techniques for Dealing with Side Effects
There are a number of techniques that you can utilize yourself at home to bring about relief from bothersome symptoms. Some of the most highly recommended self-help techniques are highlighted in the list below.
* Do a light form of exercise before bed to reduce stiffness upon waking.
* When sitting for long periods of time, take frequent breaks to move and stretch.
* Lose weight if needed so as to put less pressure on your joints.
* Stop smoking because the effects of smoke can be damaging to connective tissue.
* Avoid repetitive movements of the joints.
* Pace yourself with your daily activities and don’t overdo it with any one activity.
While there may also be other techniques that are useful for alleviating some of the discomforts that can result from arthritis, this list should give you a good place to start.
The Role of Exercise in Managing Arthritis
It may seem illogical to recommend exercise for an individual who is suffering from painful or swollen joints. However, daily physical activity is absolutely essential to keeping stiffness at bay, reducing swelling, and alleviating pain. Performing daily exercise will also help prevent the loss of range of motion that so commonly occurs in association with arthritic conditions. For best results, choose low impact exercises to avoid further injury to the joints. Walking and swimming are excellent forms of exercise that don’t put an excessive amount of strain on the joints. Light strength training that helps build muscle around the joints but doesn’t strain the joints themselves is also highly recommended to preserve your strength and flexibility. Avoid high impact exercise and sports such as running, golf, or tennis.
Medical Options for Treatment
When self-help treatments don’t work as well as hoped for, there are a variety of medical options that a person may choose to try. First of all, there are many different prescriptions and over-the-counter medications on the market now designed to treat the effects of arthritis. Since medications involve side effects, even if they’re relatively mild, it’s essential to discuss this option with your doctor.
Physical therapy can be a viable option for many patients suffering from arthritis. A highly trained physical therapist can teach you exercises that can alleviate pain, improve your range of motion, and even help build muscle.
While it’s the most invasive option on the list, surgery is also an option for those who don’t respond to other treatment methods. Surgical options can range from minor non-invasive joint repair to complete joint replacements. A qualified orthopedic surgeon can help you determine if any of the eligible procedures are right for you.
Osteo Relief Institute
The Osteo Relief Institute is a medical center located in New Jersey. The dedicated and skilled medical staff at the Osteo Relief Institute are trained to utilize the latest scientific treatment protocols to help patients reduce their joint pain and live an active life without resorting to surgery. This medical center uses the most advanced technology available today, along with state-of-the-art equipment designed to get excellent results without resorting to invasive treatment options like operations. The Osteo Relief Institute believes that help is possible for the majority of patients and that it can be achieved in non-invasive ways.
The Osteo Relief Institute Center offers a no-cost screening exam to help patients find out if they will be able to benefit from the procedures offered by the Institute. The Osteo Relief Institute designed its programs and procedures as a way to help people live active and healthy lives free of the discomfort and disability that so often comes along with arthritis and other joint diseases. The organization’s promise is to treat each individual with the compassionate care they deserve and to make every effort to provide them with effective treatment options that avoid the invasive procedures offered elsewhere.
The OsteoRelief Institute of New Jersey would like to help you determine if you are a good candidate for any of the treatment options offered by their highly trained and compassionate staff. If you’re suffering from debilitating pain, stiffness, lack of mobility, or swelling of the joints, you may want to contact the Osteo Relief Institute to schedule a risk-free screening.
More about Osteo Relief Institute at http://www.edgewaterosteoreliefinstitute.com/