Fall is in the air, and the holiday season is right around the corner. While many welcome the colder weather, lower temps and changes in atmospheric pressure can also increase joint pain. This fall, physicians from the Bone and Joint Institute of Tennessee are spreading the word about arthritis pain and treatment options.
What is arthritis?
Arthritis is inflammation and swelling that occurs within the joints caused by the absence of normal cartilage. Much like tread on your car tires, cartilage between joints can wear down to eventually cause bone-on-bone contact.
Who is most at-risk?
Degenerative arthritis is simply caused by wear-and-tear in the joints. The most common avoidable risk factor is body weight. Did you know? For every extra pound you gain, you add four pounds of extra pressure on your knee (and even more on your hip) just when walking. While anyone can contract arthritis, it can also be genetically linked.
What preventative measures can I take to reduce my risk?
Maintaining an active lifestyle, controlling weight and staying in optimal health can not only slow arthritis progression, it can also help treat the discomfort and disability that comes with arthritis.
Can I relieve my arthritis pain at home?
Ice can help decrease inflammation and heat can soothe sore muscles around your joints. Even compression sleeves, such as a semi-tight knee brace, can lead to significant improvement in pain from arthritis. Over-the-counter medications, such as anti-inflammatories and topical ointments can also provide relief. Of course, check with your doctor before starting any new medicines or treatment programs.