Find out more about Arthritis
This is a question we get asked quite frequently in the
clinic. It’s always a hard question to answer as we are all very different
people, who do very different things and have very different lifestyles.
How about if I put it to you that arthritis does not have to
be a debilitating condition, which stops you from doing things that you love
Would that change your outlook of your condition?
Yes, it’s true; arthritis does not have to be that condition
which holds you back. There are many things that you can do that can help to
keep you active and mobile. First thing that I have to implore that you do is,
to seek advice from your Health care professional!!
Let’s have a look at what arthritis actually is.
Arthritis is inflammation in the joint, be it back, knee,
shoulder, etc. It’s part of the body’s natural healing process. The two main
types of arthritis we see at the clinic are inflammatory arthritis and
degenerative/mechanical arthritis/osteoarthritis (OA).
Inflammatory arthritis normally occurs as a defence against
viruses or bacteria. Often this occurs for no obvious reason and is referred to
as an auto immune condition, which means the immune system is attacking your
joints. So, instead of helping to repair the body, inflammation can cause
damage to the affected joint and cause pain and stiffness. The inflammation can
also affect tendons and ligaments surrounding the joint.
Degenerative/mechanical/osteoarthritis (OA) is a group of
conditions where the main problem is damage to the cartilage which covers the
end of the bones. Normally the cartilage helps the joints to move smoothly. In
this type of arthritis the cartilage becomes thinner and rougher. The bone
underneath then tries to repair the damage but sometimes overgrows, altering
the shape of the joint. It can also result from previous damage to the joint
such as fractures or previous inflammation.
Ok, so knowing what it is, what can we do about it?
Ok so first, seek healthcare professional advice. As I said
above we are all very different and at very different stages of having the
condition in different joints. Getting assessed properly, finding out all about
you is the most important thing. Finding out about what you can or can’t do and
even what you would like to be able to do, top our list every time.
NOTE! Doing nothing will get you nowhere!
I am always keen to find out what your limitations are and
setting goals to get you closer to where you would like to be.
The main thing with physiotherapy and arthritis treatment
always boils down to the assessment. Inevitably there will be some exercise to do;
as this is what research tells us is important to help ease those aches, pains
and tightness. Finding the right
exercise regime that works best for you without overly stressing your body or
making things worse is always one of our goals.
At our clinic, we also advocate the use of manual therapy techniques
to help loosen off tight muscles and stiff joints. That is what we find works
best for our clients.
So, is my arthritis going to get worse and cause more pain?
In my opinion, yes it will if you do not seek help and find
the right rehabilitation. Getting the right treatment will certainly help to
keep aches and pains at bay.
Remember, doing nothing will most likely make things worse.
If you have any further questions, please feel free to
contact the clinic on 02892 666959, or email@example.com