Osteoarthritis is a disease that occurs usually in people who are over 40 years old. It is a degenerative disease that worsens as the patient advances in age. It affects some joints in the body such as the hips, spine, knees, hands and fingers. The cartilage tissues around the joints wear out making the bones to rub against each other causing great pain. The symptoms normally associated with osteoarthritis are pain, swollen joints, and stiffness.
Effects of Osteoarthritis
The effects of most of the symptoms are telling on daily activities such as walking, bending, kneeling, climbing stairs, opening bottles and jars, and getting up from bed in the morning. As the disease gets worse and as the patients grows older the symptoms becomes worse. It has been noticed that symptoms of osteoarthritis get worse after long periods of inactivity like sleep or sitting at one place for a long time. The pains in the joints are so intense as the swelling increases that mobility becomes difficult for the patient.
Diagnosis of Osteoarthritis
The symptoms of osteoarthritis can be observed in both women and men between ages of 40 to 50 years. The pains are slight in the beginning and in some cases they are unnoticed until in later years when the swelling gets worse. The swellings can be seen in an X-ray at this stage only in a few people. But as the disease advances X-rays are able to detect it.
Treatment of Osteoarthritis
There is some medication for relieving most of the symptoms of osteoarthritis. There are natural home remedies too. However, there are no cures for the disease. When the pain becomes too severe for the patient to bear, surgery may be done in some cases. But the most effective methods that can reduce the pain are exercise, acupuncture, and some traditional medicines.
Once a person finds out that he has osteoarthritis, he must start exercising as much as possible. There are certain types of exercises that can be done, especially flexibility exercises like walking, swimming and endurance and resistance exercises.
Heat pads can also be applied to affected joints to give some relief from the pain. Omega-3 fatty acids are recommended for patients of the disease. Food supplements like glucosamine and Chondroitin can also give some relief.