Arthritis is one of the most common chronic conditions faced by both adults as well as children worldwide. This condition is caused due to inflammation of joints and swelling of the tissues surrounding them. There are more than 100 types of arthritis and the most common of them is Osteoarthritis.
Osteoarthritis is also commonly known as the arthritis of ‘wear and tear’ and mostly occurs in the knees, hips, and hands. In osteoarthritis, the cartilage in a joint begins to break down and the bone begins to change shape and structure. This condition causes pain and swelling and can deteriorate over time. Severe osteoarthritis can lead to massive restrictions in body movement and even lead cause disability.
Pain in joints, body stiffness, decreased range of motion and lack of flexibility are some of the key symptoms of osteoarthritis. This condition can lead to damage of joints in knees, hips, and hands and cause severe hindrance in performing daily activities. Women especially after 50 years of age and obese people are high-risk candidates for osteoarthritis. While it is generally considered an age-related condition, osteoarthritis can be seen in several children worldwide due to genetic factors. In addition to this, demographics also play a key role in being diagnosed with this condition as some Asian communities are at higher risk of suffering from osteoarthritis
Diagnosis of Osteoarthritis
Early diagnosis and medical intervention can lead to better care and make the situation comfortable for patients. Diagnosis is usually done by a thorough examination of symptoms, physical examination, X- rays, and other lab tests. Consult your nearest rheumatologist at a super speciality hospital if you display any common symptoms of arthritis. If diagnosed early, the condition can be prevented from progressing further and you can lead a comfortable life.
Prevention of Osteoarthritis
Stay Active- Sedentary lifestyle is a major cause of several chronic diseases and osteoarthritis is one of them. Regular movement and body conditioning promote flexibility and strengthen our joints and muscles in risk-prone areas like the hips and knees.
Manage Weight – Our joints face severe wear and tear if the body weight is not controlled. Having optimum body composition enables us to stay agile and healthy and prevent this chronic condition.
Protect your joints – Physical activities done without safety gear like cushioned shoes and safety belts can cause severe damage to the joints. Engage in low-impact activities like swimming and brisk walking to keep your joints safe.
Talk to a doctor – Joint pains are often ignored as a casual muscle ache. Prolonged neglect of joint pains can cause arthritis to develop into a painful experience. Regular checkups and immediate attention to any discomfort in joints can lead to effective treatment and comfortable life.
Early diagnosis and wider awareness are one of the best ways to tackle arthritis. To achieve this, every year October 12th is marked as World Arthritis Day. Another key objective of World Arthritis Day is to celebrate the advancements in treatment and create a common platform for patients and their families to share their experiences. Arthritis affects more than 350 million people worldwide and through a common platform and increased awareness, we can battle this disease efficiently.