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Arthritis – Symptoms and Causes

Arthritis is defined as a disorder of the joints where you experience painful and inflamed joints. This condition can either effect single or various joints at once. There are various kinds of arthritis with variations in causes along with the treatment options. The most commonly seen arthritis include rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.

SYMPTOMS OF ARTHRITIS

The signs and symptoms with arthritis develop over a period of time. They might appear suddenly or take a longer period. Arthritis is a common condition which mostly affects people aged above 60-65 years. However, in Pakistan, it is very common in old age as well young age. It is seen more commonly within Pakistan due to the unhealthy diet and lack of proper nutrients. Arthritis is also seen among younger adults, teens, and children. It is a condition which is commonly seen among overweight people and on the basis of gender more commonly seen in women.

The most common symptoms linked with arthritis include:

  1. Joint stiffness
  2. Joint pain
  3. Swelling of the joints
  4. Reddish skin over the affected joints
  5. Reduced range of motion of the joints
  6. Worse symptoms are experienced during morning i.e. morning stiffness

If you are suffering from rheumatoid arthritis then you might experience fatigue, tiredness, appetite loss, inflammation of the immune system and others. Rheumatoid arthritis can also result in anemia leading to reduced blood count. You might also suffer from fever due to RA. If you are suffering from severe rheumatoid arthritis then it might result in joint deformity.

CAUSES OF VARIOUS ARTHRITIS

Joints have cartilage that serves as a firm, flexible connective tissue. These cartilages protect the joints against shock and pressure when there is increased movement in order to avoid stress over the joints. When this cartilage tissue gets resorbed or deteriorates it leads to arthritis.

• Normal physical activities leading to wear and tear can result in Osteoarthritis. Damage or certain injury to the joints along with infections can also result in arthritis. The infection and injuries can also lead to rupture of the cartilaginous tissues. Genetic transmission of diseases from parents to children can also result in increased chances of the disease.

• Rheumatoid Arthritis is another arthritis which is a type of autoimmune disorder. During this condition, the body’s immune system starts attacking the body tissues. This immune response affects the soft tissues within the joint i.e. Synovium. It is an important part of the joint which lubricates and nourishes it.

RISK FACTORS LINKED WITH ARTHRITIS

  • Age is the most common risk factor leading to arthritis. Gout, rheumatoid arthritis, and osteoarthritis are more commonly seen with increased age.
  • Sex is another factor which should be considered for arthritis. Women most commonly are affected by rheumatoid arthritis while gout and other types of arthritis commonly affect men.
  • Family history matters a lot when considering arthritis. Some forms of arthritis more commonly transfer from parents to their siblings.
  • Certain injuries can also result in arthritis of that specific joint
  • Weight gain is another factor leading to arthritis. It most commonly affects hip joint, knees and spine.

ARTHRITIS TREATMENT

The major arthritis treatment plan revolves around controlling the joint pain. The doctors plan an arthritis treatment where they try to prevent further damage to the affected as well as extra joints.

With the ongoing time, you’ll eventually realize how to control pain. Most people find ice packs and heat pads effective to sooth the painful joints. Other arthritis patients rely on mobility devices such as walkers or canes in order to get rid of pressure over the swollen joints.

SURGICAL ARTHRITIS TREATMENT OPTIONS

Surgical options for rheumatoid arthritis treatment and other types of arthritis include:

  • Synovectomy where the inflamed synovium i.e. lining of the joints is removed. It is performed for hips, knees, wrists, fingers or elbows.
  • Joint fusion where the joint is surgically fused to realign or stabilize the damaged joint. It is not a joint replacement option but it is highly affected in reducing pain.
  • Tendon repair where the tendons that get ruptured around the joints due to damage or inflammation of the joints are repaired. This surgical procedure aids in repairing the damaged tendons around the joints.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis treatment also includes total joint replacement where all the damaged parts are removed. The surgeon removes those parts from the joints and inserts plastic or metal prosthesis.

FINAL WORDS

Other than the arthritis treatment option, certain lifestyle modifications are also effective in treating the painful joints. Perform gentle exercises regularly. It helps in increasing the muscles strength located surrounding the joints. However, avoid performing the exercise if you have injured, swollen or inflamed joints. Heat and cold packs can help in relieving the painful joints. 

It helps in easing the pain sensation and relaxes the painful muscles. Cold packs can numb the painful joint leading to reduced swelling of the joint. Have complete rest and avoid getting stressed due to the daily activities. Deep breathing, yoga, and other meditation techniques are highly effective in controlling pain and relaxing the muscles. Try these arthritis treatment options to relieve the painful joints.

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