Dr Anil Raheja
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Arthritis Management

Arthritis happens when there is a slow wear and tear of the cartilage surrounding the joints. Cartilage is that portion of the joint which allows it to move freely. Now when this breaks down the bones tends to rub together and this creates a severe pain as well as inflammation of the joints. Such joint inflammations are referred to as arthritis.

Symptoms of arthritis

  • Joint swelling
  • Joint Pain
  • Stiffness in the morning
  • Low mobility in moving the joint.
  • Skin shows redness around the joint

Types of arthritis

Here are some of the common types of arthritis that is found to occur.

Osteoarthritis: This is the gradual wear and tear of cartilage around the joint. This a very common form of arthritis and is found in knee, hip as well facet joint.

Rheumatoid arthritis: Here the body’s defense system attacks the body joints which creates swelling of the joints. This spreads to the nearby tissue which can gradually create cartilage damage. It mostly affects knees, wrists and hands.in some cases it may also affect the skin, nerves and eyes.

Gout: Gouts are also major cause for arthritis problem. People who tend to consume food rich in purine like organ meats (liver, kidney), anchovies, dried beans, mushrooms, sardines and asparagus tend to have it. These foods tend to break down and produce uric acid. This in abundance tends to create crystal deposit in the joint which turns out to be quite painful.

Diagnosis

A specialist may diagnose arthritis form physical examination of the affected joint. For getting a better idea x-rays or MRI scanning may be done. In some cases urine, blood or fluid may be tested to rule out the type of arthritis.

How to get relief from arthritis

Early diagnosis of the arthritis can help in preventing and minimizing the pain that arises. Early diagnosis of the problem and its proper treatment can help a lot. The following simple and easy steps can also help you a lot in getting relief from arthritis.

Lose weight: One of the major causes for arthritis is obesity and overweight. Maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly can help shed off some weight. This will in turn reduce the pressure off the joints.

Food: Alcohol should also be avoided. Food rich in omega 3 fatty acids like salmon, mackerel, herring, flaxseed, pumpkin seeds, rapeseed (canola) oil, soybeans, soybean oil, and walnuts are good for arthritis.

Exercise: Aerobic exercises and stretching exercises can be very helpful in getting rid of pain that is developed in the joints. But make sure that you get the advice of a physical therapist or your doctor who can guide you with the right exercises.

Position: It’s better to avoid staying in one position for long time.

Medication: Medications can provide temporary relief form the pain or irritation developed due to arthritis. There are many medicines that can give some relief for short period of time. But it is important to see that these medicines are taken after the prescription given by the orthopedic doctor.

Surgery

If the pain is severe and the medication or any remedy is not showing any relief then the doctor may recommend surgery. Here the doctor may replace the joint or take steps to rectify the damage that has occurred over time.