Arthritis

Arthritis is an inflammation of joints. It can affect a single joint as well as multiple joints. Arthritis is a progressive condition, that can get worsen over time and can sometimes accompany aging. There are more than 100 different types of arthritis, with different etiology and treatments. Common types of arthritis among them are Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Types

There are different types of arthritis, the main ones are

  • Ankylosing spondylitis
  • Gout
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Reactive arthritis
  • Psoriatic arthritis
  • Juvenile idiopathic arthritis etc.

Symptoms

The specific symptoms may vary from person to person depending on the type of arthritis but the most common signs and symptoms of arthritis involve the joints.

  • Pain
  • Stiffness of the joints
  • Swelling
  • Redness
  • Decreased range of motion
  • In Rheumatoid Arthritis -the patient may experience a tired feeling, loss of appetite, anemia, and slight fever.

Many patients usually experience their symptoms getting worsen in the morning time.

Causes

  • Osteoarthritis causes cartilage which is a hard slippery tissue that covers the end of bones where they form the joints -to break down.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks the joints, beginning with the lining of joints.
  • Uric acid crystals, usually when there is too much uric acid in your blood more than normal; can cause gout.
  • Other Infections in the body or underlying disease conditions such as psoriasis can cause other types of arthritis.

Risk factors

  • Family History: Some types of arthritis run in families.so you are likely to develop arthritis if your near ones have the disease.
  • Age: Risk of many types of arthritis including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout usually increases with age.
  • Sex: Women are more likely to develop Rheumatoid Arthritis while men are likely to have gout.
  • Previous joint injury: People with a history of previous joint injury, are more likely to develop arthritis in that joint.
  • Obesity: People who are obese in nature, have a higher risk of developing arthritis particularly in the knee, hips, and spine.

Treatments:

  • Medications
  • Nonpharmacologic therapies
  • Physical or occupational therapy
  • Splints or joints assistive aids
  • Patient education and support
  • Weight loss
  • Surgery, including joint replacement.

Preventive or Natural therapies:

  • Supplements or herbs
  • Vitamin and minerals, especially calcium, and vitamin C, D, and E.
  • Natural therapies such as massage, Yoga, Aromatherapy, etc.