When you first hear about arthritis, you may think that there’s really nothing you can do about it. You may have a grandparent who used to complain about their hands hurting, or that their back hurt. You probably thought it was just one of those illnesses that happened to you as you got older. However, arthritis can be serious. In fact, more people are disabled because of arthritis than any other disability in the United States. May is National Arthritis Awareness Month, so this is a great time to find out more about the disease.
What Is Arthritis Exactly?
When you have arthritis, you experience inflammation in your joints. You can have one joint that is inflamed, or several joints that are inflamed. Arthritis could also inflame the tissue around the joint, or just the joint itself.
There are several reasons people get arthritis. Sometimes, people develop arthritis because they had a previous injury, and inflammation develops in that joint. You can also have a disease called rheumatoid arthritis or psoriatic arthritis, which can affect more than just your joints. Sometimes, people develop arthritis in a joint after an infection. There’s no one way to get arthritis.
If you suffer from arthritis, the degree of pain and discomfort you can experience can vary. Some people feel very little pain at all and may only have swelling from time to time. Others experience a great deal of pain from arthritis and have significant mobility issues. Everyone’s arthritis affects them differently. Arthritis can keep some people from enjoying their daily lives. They have trouble reaching and grabbing objects, walking, or cleaning their houses.
What Can I Do to Live With Arthritis?
You can work to minimize the effects of arthritis. Be sure that you are moving your joints regularly. You may want to think about exercise that is non-weight bearing, such as swimming. When you move around, it actually reduces pain and helps you be more flexible. You can also take medications, like anti-inflammatories, that help to reduce inflammation and swelling from arthritis.
There are also tools you can buy to help you continue to be mobile and complete chores, such as reaching tools, lid openers, and tools that are easier to grip. If you are suffering from arthritis, there are ways to get help. Talk to your doctor today about your problems with swelling and joint pain.
If you or someone you love needs a little extra help at home, why not come by and see us? We have locations in Naples, Sarasota, Bradenton, and Fort Meyers. You can also give us a call at 941.388.3117.