The joints in our body are a magnificent part of our infrastructure, but what happens when they deteriorate and affect our daily lives.
Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis, where the cartilage breaks down and wears away. This leads to narrowing of the space between the bones, which causes them to rub against each other, causing pain.
Other symptoms are:
- Stiff joints
- You can’t bend the joint as much as before
- Joint swelling
There is no cure for Osteoarthritis, but lifestyle changes, mechanical aids (eg. Hand rails, tap turners), and surgery may help. Some tips on managing/preventing the deterioration of your joints:
- Regular exercise can reduce pain and make your joints more flexible.
- Warmth around the joint (eg. A heated pool) can help you move more easily.
- Keep to a healthy weight to limit the load on your hips and knees.
- Avoid sitting in the same position for too long.
- Ask a physiotherapist or podiatrist for advice on suitable footwear to help reduce joint stress.
“There is no cure for Osteoarthritis, but lifestyle changes, mechanical aids (eg. Hand rails, tap turners), and surgery may help.“
Symptoms of Osteoarthritis may also be relieved by a number of different medicines. Please consult your trusty Friendlies Pharmacist or doctor for any advice.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an auto-immune disease where your own immune system attacks your body, resulting in damage to joints and organs. Whereas OA affects the cartilage in the joints, RA usually damages the lining of the joints. Also, RA mainly affects the smaller joints in the hands and feet, and usually affects the same joints on both sides of the body at the same time.
Most common symptoms are:
- Joint stiffness, especially in the morning
- Constant tiredness
- Warm, red, swollen, painful joints
- Loss of joint motion
The management of RA can incorporate the expertise from doctors, pharmacists, podiatrists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and dieticians. Apart from the vast array of medication available for the relief of symptoms, there are other tips that can be incorporated into your day to help manage your Rheumatoid arthritis such as:
- Using cold packs on affected joints to relieve hot and swollen joints (please seek the advice of your doctor on when to use hot or cold therapy)
- Keeping to a healthy weight
- Not smoking, as it can worsen RA. Smokers are also more likely to get RA
Well here it is, a short rundown on 2 common types of arthritis. For more information or advice on arthritis or any other health matter, call or visit on of our pharmacies.