What is Arthritis?
Arthritis is an umbrella term for over 100 medical conditions that affect your joints.
Arthritis-related problems include pain, stiffness, inflammation, and damage to joint cartilage (the tissue covering the ends of bones, enabling them to move against each other) and surrounding structures. Arthritis can result in muscle weakness, joint instability and physical deformities. These physical deficits can interfere with your most basic daily tasks, such as walking and eating. Plus, it can limit your ability and drive a car, open jars, reach high shelves, put on your shoes etc.
The number of people who have arthritis is growing as our population lives longer. There is a belief that arthritis is simply a consequence of age. But, arthritis is not merely a natural part of ageing. There are millions of working-age sufferers. Researchers have identified that individual families are susceptible to arthritis through genetic predisposition.
However, the early diagnosis seems to be a key to better management of your arthritis. Research suggests that early intervention can delay the onset of the disease and reduce the number of cases of osteoarthritis.
Common Causes of Arthritis
While there are about 100 forms of arthritis, the three most common causes account for 95% of all arthritis. These are:
Less Common Causes of Arthritis
General Arthritis Information
Rheumatoid Conditions – Overview
Osteoarthritis – Overview
- Hip Arthritis (Osteoarthritis)
- Knee Arthritis
- Ankle Arthritis
- Shoulder Arthritis
- Hand or Wrist Arthritis
Common Arthritis Treatments
There is no known cure for arthritis. However, arthritis is usually manageable but can impact your quality of life and includes varying degrees of discomfort and pain.
With accurate assessment and early treatment, most arthritis sufferers respond effectively to physiotherapy allowing you to resume pain-free and healthy activities of daily living.
Please ask your physiotherapist for their professional treatment advice.
Understanding Arthritis-Related Conditions
Arthritis is a prevalent and diverse group of conditions affecting millions worldwide. It encompasses many disorders characterised by inflammation and joint pain, often leading to stiffness, swelling, and reduced mobility. Arthritis can significantly impact a person's quality of life, affecting their ability to perform daily tasks and engage in physical activities.
This article aims to provide a comprehensive overview of arthritis-related conditions, focusing on both rheumatoid and osteoarthritis. By understanding these conditions' causes, symptoms, and treatment options, individuals can make informed decisions about managing their joint health and seek appropriate medical guidance.
In this article, we will explore the fundamental aspects of arthritis, including its definition, common symptoms, and risk factors. By establishing a clear understanding of what arthritis entails, readers can grasp the broader context before diving into specific subtypes.
This article delves into rheumatoid conditions, encompassing autoimmune disorders primarily affecting the joints. We will provide an overview of each condition, highlighting key characteristics, diagnostic approaches, and available treatment modalities. The rheumatoid conditions covered in this article include:
- Ankylosing Spondylitis,
- Psoriatic Arthritis,
- Rheumatoid Arthritis.
- What is a Rheumatoid Physiotherapy?
Osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis, is the focus of this section. We will delve into its definition, underlying causes, risk factors, and prevalence. Additionally, we will explore specific osteoarthritis conditions.
Spinal Arthritic Conditions
Peripheral Joint Arthritis
By dividing the information into these sections, we aim to provide readers with a well-structured and informative resource. Each section will delve into the specificities of the respective conditions, including their impact on different parts of the body, available treatment options, and strategies for managing symptoms. Whether you seek general knowledge or are personally affected by arthritis-related conditions, this article is a valuable guide to navigating this complex field.
Please note that while this article provides a comprehensive overview, it is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Individuals experiencing symptoms or seeking specific treatment recommendations should consult with qualified healthcare professionals for personalised care.
Joints, over time, exhibit signs of wear and tear: the joint cartilage thins out, extra bony spurs develop in response to stress, and joint mobility diminishes. In advanced stages, osteoarthritis can become not only painful but also limiting in function and mood.
Exploring Osteoarthritis Management
Regrettably, a cure for osteoarthritis remains elusive. Nevertheless, there are more effective methods to manage the condition and slow down the degenerative process. By embracing these improvements, you can make your life smoother and more comfortable. A crucial component of this approach is physiotherapy, which plays a pivotal role in reducing osteoarthritis-related discomfort, enhancing comfort, and maintaining your activity levels.
Validating with Research
Numerous studies underscore the benefits of physiotherapy in alleviating pain and mitigating the disability linked to arthritis, especially in cases of knee osteoarthritis. (Source: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bjsports-2016-096458)
Empowering through Expert Guidance
To rediscover the joy of life, seek the insightful counsel of your physiotherapist today!
Navigating Osteoarthritis Diagnosis
The most straightforward test to confirm osteoarthritis remains an X-ray. A skilled practitioner can often make a reliable assessment of your condition upon examination.
Impact on Ageing Individuals
As we age, most of us inevitably encounter some degree of osteoarthritis. The wear and tear on our joints can result from various factors, including aging, injury, prolonged microtrauma, joint overuse, or excessive weight. This can lead to lasting changes in the bones, even in the absence of painful symptoms.
The extent of suffering varies, ranging from mild or occasional pain triggered by increased use or minor injury, to those who remain symptom-free and others who experience constant debilitating pain.
Weight-bearing joints like the hips, knees, ankles, feet, and spine are commonly affected. However, osteoarthritis can target any joint in the body, with hands and shoulders also being frequently affected. While severe cases might necessitate surgery, the majority respond positively to the combination of physician-prescribed physiotherapy and medication.
Recognising Osteoarthritis Signs
Osteoarthritis might be suspected if you encounter any of the following:
- Intermittent joint pain or tenderness
- Morning stiffness, particularly pronounced
- Swelling or distortion of the joint
- Detectable warmth and redness in the joint
- Challenging joint movement
Holistic Osteoarthritis Care
For guidance on your osteoarthritis diagnosis, self-help strategies, or the most suitable treatment, reach out promptly to your physiotherapist or a trusted healthcare professional.