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Arthritis

Arthritis (inflammation of the joints) is a condition that affects millions today. Arthritis involves the determination of cartilage. Cartilage is soft tissue that protects the joint and keeps it moving smoothly. Cartilage also acts as a shock absorber when you walk, jump, or run. Without the proper amount of cartilage bones rub together causing pain, inflammation, and stiffness.

Joint inflammation can be caused by a broken one, general wear and tear, and infection. When treated joint inflammation usually disappears, if it does not you have what is called chronic arthritis. Symptoms of arthritis include joint pain and swelling, redness of skin around joint, warmth around joint, and stiffness in the morning. Signs and test for arthritis include: fluid around a joint, warm, red, tender joints difficulty moving a joint or “limited range of motion”, and more. The treatments for arthritis are to reduce pain and prevent further joint damage. These treatments usually include a lifestyle change. Lifestyle changes can reduce pain and fatigue, improve bone strength, and relieve stiffness. Lifestyle changes may include changing your diet, your exercise routines, or even you medication.

When taking medication keep in mind that all medications have risks and it is important to be under the watch of a doctor when taking arthritis medications. Generally “over the counter” medications such as Tylenol, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, and the like are recommended first. It is important to only take medications as directed by you doctor. Other methods such as physical therapy may be recommended. This may include applying heat and or ice splints to support joints and help improve their position, water therapy, and massage. Preventative measures include avoiding staying in on position for too long, losing weight if you are overweight, getting plenty of sleep, eating a healthy diet of fruits and vegetables, and getting plenty of exercise.

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