Arthritis is a common disease which has become synonymous to joint pains or stiffness. However, a lot of people and even arthritis patients have a lot of misconceptions about this common condition. Here are some of the misconceptions and facts that might leave you surprised.
– Arthritis is a single disease
There are more than 100 types of arthritis. It’s important to be accurately diagnosed and know what type of arthritis you have so that you can begin an appropriate course of treatment. Different types of arthritis include Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid arthritis, Psoriatic arthritis, Juvenile arthritis, Carpel Tunnel Syndrome, Infectious arthritis.
– Affects older people
While this is where it’s most commonly seen, it’s not where it starts. Children suffer from arthritis, too. Young adults with knee injuries have six times the risk of developing osteoarthritis in that joint by age 65. Those with hip injuries are three times more likely. Getting injured can disrupt the mechanics or integrity of a particular joint, which can increase the risk for degenerative arthritis over time.
– It affects just knees and hips
You can develop arthritis in any joint. Osteoarthritis- which involves the breakdown of the cartilage in a joint, usually from cumulative wear and tear- commonly affects the neck, lower back, knees, hips, and hands. While, rheumatoid arthritis- an autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks the joints, causing pain and swelling- is more likely to strike the small joints in the wrists, hands, neck, and spine. Meanwhile, gout (another form of inflammatory arthritis) commonly starts with pain and swelling in the big toe but can progress to the ankles or knees.
– Movement is not good
People who remain active are far better off than those who lead a sedentary lifestyle. This can be challenging when you’re in pain, but it doesn’t take much. Aquatic exercise, a short bike ride or walking every day can be enough. However, if you experience consistent pain from any of the activities, you can consult your doctor and tone it down.
– There is no cure but early diagnosis and treatment are essential.
– Insomnia is an often undertreated side effect of arthritis.
– Weather makes a difference. In fact, when the atmospheric pressure changes, your arthritis might flare-up
– Fatigue is more than just “being tired” — it’s a type of exhaustion that doesn’t go away. It can worsen pain and make it hard to concentrate. Minimize its effects by managing your activities, eating well, staying active and getting plenty of sleep
– It is important for people with arthritis to maintain a healthy weight. For people who are overweight or obese, losing weight reduces pressure on joints, particularly weight-bearing joints like the hips and knees. It can improve your condition and your response to treatment.
– Humans are not the only living beings that are affected by arthritis as a majority of animals also suffer from this disease during their lifetime. Dogs and cats are among the most common animals that develop this disease.
Consult an Orthopaedic Specialist at Regency Healthcare for the correct diagnosis and treatment of Arthritis.