Arthritis refers to joint pain or joint disease that causes swelling and tenderness of one or more joints. It is a very common condition but is not well understood. There are more than 100 types of arthritis. However, the two most common forms of arthritis include osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis that causes the cartilage between the bones to break down through wear and tear. When the protective cartilage that cushions the ends of the bones wears down, it results in bone rubbing against bone. Osteoarthritis can damage any joint, but the disorder most commonly affects joints in the hands, knees, hips and spine.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder, which means that the immune system attacks healthy cells in the body by mistake. The lining of the joint becomes inflamed, which causes damage to joint tissue, resulting in long-lasting or chronic pain. Rheumatoid arthritis commonly affects joints in the hands, wrists and knees.
Symptoms of Arthritis:
The most common symptoms of arthritis include:
- Joint pain and stiffness
- Decreased range of motion
Risk factors for Arthritis:
Possible risk factors for arthritis include:
- Previous joint injury
- Family history
Treatment for Arthritis:
Treatment for arthritis is centered around relieving pain and reducing inflammation and joint stiffness. In most cases, rest and anti-inflammatory medications may be sufficient. However, in more severe cases, the following treatments may help one find relief:
- Physical therapy
- Biologic response modifiers
- Lifestyle changes, such as weight loss, exercise, and heat/ice therapy
At ForCare Medical Center, we can help you manage your symptoms caused by arthritis and find relief. Contact ForCare Medical Center today to schedule your appointment.