There are several types of arthritis, the most common of which are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is also sometimes called degenerative joint disease, and it is associated with aging. The primary underlying cause of osteoarthritis is wear and tear on the joints, which naturally occurs with the aging process.Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder that causes inflammation of and damage to the joints. Rheumatoid arthritis commonly appears in middle age, and is far more prevalent in women than in men. There is no correlation between certain ethnic or racial groups and the prevalence of rheumatoid arthritis, and it can also affect children and young adults.Clearly, the most common identifiable sign of arthritis is chronic pain in the affected region. Arthritis is frequently associated with pain and stiffness in joints, especially joints that have been injured in the past. Pain and stiffness may be most noticeable after being immobile for a period of time, such as after sleeping.
Swelling is also a very common symptom of all forms of arthritis.Arthritis frequently causes hip pain, knee pain, wrist pain, and pain, stiffness, and swelling in the finger joints. Another common symptom that can aid in the proper diagnosis of arthritis is a warm sensation around the affected area. A key indicator is the presence of symptoms in the same joints on both the left and right sides of the body. For example, if the same symptoms are affecting both wrists, it is a likely indication that arthritis may be the cause. A decreased ability to move the joint may occur in relation to the pain and stiffness caused by arthritis. Arthritis, particularly rheumatoid arthritis, may also cause a general feeling of fatigue throughout the entire body. In some cases, a fever may be present.In severe cases, joint deformity may occur. With advanced progression of arthritis, a patient's range of motion can be significantly affected, possibly leading to the necessary use of a mobility aid, such as a cane. Symptoms associated with this degenerative disease that are persistent over a period of several months should be evaluated immediately.
Early diagnosis and treatment are helpful in slowing the progression of arthritis and ensuring a better, longer lasting fulfilled life for patients.Physical therapy and other natural and homeopathic remedies can greatly improve the symptoms of arthritis and help to slow the progression of the disease. Because arthritis affects the joints of the body, which are made up of ligaments and cartilage, certain herbal and mineral formulations can help to improve the elasticity of the ligaments and lubrication of the joint, improving comfort and reducing pain caused by damage to the area.Visit your health professional at your first concern that you may be suffering from arthritis. A proper diagnosis is the first step to formulating a treatment plan that will have you living life to the fullest, free of pain, for as long as possible.