Is Osteoarthritis Something You Should Be Worried About?

Osteoarthritis When you hear the word "arthritis", do you immediately think of older people who are frail and have poor bone and joint health?

Osteoarthritis (OA)

This is the most common joint condition, which is mostly present in the knee and hip. It's true that OA does occur in older people - due to wear and tear of the cartilage between your bones. However, OA can occur in younger bodies, too! OA occurs when the thin layer of cartilage between your articulating bones in a joint break down due to wear and tear. This degenerative change causes pain, swelling and stiffness of the joint, which is quite disabling when humans are designed to move about.

Risk factors of developing OA

Apart from the 'wear and tear' of your bones/cartilage between your bones, the following could contribute to the development of OA.
  • Genetics: defects in the gene that produces collagen can lead to early onset of OA
  • Overuse of joints: repetitive movements may result in the cartilage of your joints to wear out at a faster rate
  • Injuries: having had injuries to your joints (including bones and ligaments) puts you at a higher risk of developing OA
  • Weight: research has shown that being overweight puts extra pressure through your hips and knees
  • Other risk factors: metabolic diseases, hormonal disorders and other more serious health issues can lead to OA of your joints
 

Have a read of our previous blogpost about how physiotherapy can help with arthritis:

 
How Physiotherapy Can Help Arthritis

4 Take-Home Messages for You

  1. Consider exercises that have lower impact to your joints
  2. Consider losing weight to help reduce the pressure you're putting through your joints
  3. You are in control of some risk factors
  4. Physiotherapy can help you strengthen muscles and help with pain relief
 
References
  Arthritis.org. (2018). Osteoarthritis | Arthritis Foundation. [online] Available at: https://www.arthritis.org/about-arthritis/types/osteoarthritis/ [Accessed 3 Mar. 2018]. Health.com. (2018). 5 Things You Need to Know About Osteoarthritis, Even If You’re Young. [online] Available at: http://www.health.com/osteoarthritis/osteoarthritis-symptoms-young-people?cid=2017007&XID=time-health-hub [Accessed 3 Mar. 2018].  
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