What You Need to Know About Osteoarthritis

Are you curious about osteoarthritis? Want to know how you can reduce your risk of developing this debilitating condition? Here are a few fast facts about osteoarthritis that everyone should know.

Osteoarthritis Can Affect Anyone

While osteoarthritis is a “wear and tear” disease that frequently strikes older adults, it’s possible for people of any age to develop this condition. Athletes and those who have suffered an injury are at risk for developing the condition in their 20s or 30s.

Osteoarthritis Has Many Different Causes

Aging is just one cause of osteoarthritis. Your risks increase if you fall into one of the following categories:

  • Overweight or obese
  • A prior joint injury
  • A genetic defect in the cartilage of the joints
  • Employed at a job that stresses the joints

Osteoarthritis Affects a Lot of PeopleAn older man sitting on a balcony.

Experts estimate that there are about 27 million Americans struggling with osteoarthritis. That means that roughly nine percent of all Americans are coping with the symptoms of osteoporosis every single day.

Osteoarthritis Symptoms Can Be Confused With Other Conditions

The symptoms of osteoarthritis—joint aching, stiffness and swelling are often confused with other conditions like:

  • Osteoporosis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Lupus
  • Lyme disease

If you’ve been diagnosed with any of the above conditions, it may be wise to consider getting a second opinion.

Osteoarthritis Can Be Treated With Holistic Health Treatments

Just because you’ve been diagnosed with osteoarthritis is no reason to assume that the rest of your life is going to be a mixture of pills, shots and surgery. There are many things that a person with osteoarthritis can do to reduce their pain and slow down the progression of their condition. Your chiropractic team can work with you on a wellness plan that’s tailored to your own personal goals.

Osteoarthritis Won’t Leave You Bedridden

This condition typically responds well to exercise and physical therapy. Because osteoarthritis tends to show up in the knees, it’s important to perform low-impact exercises that will strengthen the lower body. Your chiropractor will be able to demonstrate exercises to improve the strength of your muscles, while relieving the strain on your joints.

Osteoarthritis Isn’t Mandatory for Aging Adults

Many health conditions that were once considered to be the price we paid for growing older are finally being recognized as being treatable. Even with a family history of arthritis, there’s still a lot that you can do to protect yourself. If you have a genetic link to osteoarthritis, or if you’re over the age of 50, talk to your doctor of chiropractic to see what your arthritis-busting options are. It’s almost never too late to begin taking care of your joints and working with your chiropractic team on a plan for long-term health is a great place to begin.

 

Always consult your chiropractor or primary care physician for all your health related advice.

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Photo credit: Used under Creative Commons Licensing courtesy of Emilio Labrador

This article is made available for general, entertainment and educational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of The Joint Corp (or its franchisees and affiliates). You should always seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.