Beginning To Squeak
You are feeling the start of stiffening joints. By year 2040, 26% of U.S. adults age 18 years or older will have arthritis. That’s about 78 million people. By comparison, from 2013–2015, 54.4 million of the U.S. population had some form of arthritis.
Subject to regional differences, nearly one quarter of the population is heading for aches, pains and squeaks. Are you in that percentile? The presence of arthritis normally comes to light following an X-ray. You might have complaints of persistent joint pain or stiffness as a result of inflammation before the diagnosis.
Occurring more frequently among elderly, an individual in teenage years can develop arthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis differs from osteoarthritis. Posters on this website illustrate and explain distinctions. Building muscle mass and daily stretching helps compensate for arthritic pain. But daily chores get more difficult.
Arthritis Affects Normal Activities
- Buttoning clothing
- Jar opening
- Lifting objects
- Prolonged sitting
- Rising from chair
- Tying shoelaces
Arthritis Pain Treatments
With the aches and pains from normal activities, there is a tendency for a decrease in aerobic activity. This can lead to obesity and other comorbidities. Extra weight puts more pressure on inflamed joints. Ice packs reduce inflammation.
Reliance upon nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) increases. As topical creams and ibuprofen lose effectiveness, you might graduate to naproxen. This can cause drowsiness.
When the pain gets debilitating, a rheumatology professional might prescribe stronger drugs with numerous side effects. Some patients benefit from cortisone injections. Others prefer physiotherapy or acupuncture. In severe cases surgery can relieve some symptoms of arthritis, but it isn’t a cure for the progressive condition.
Most patients adjust their personal activities to new limitations. Assistive devices range from the addition of handrails in key locations to multi-function bottle openers. Which devices are most helpful to you? With a goal of more mobility, discuss concerns with your personal doctor.
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- Arthritis-Related Statistics. cdc.gov
- Self-Help Arthritis Devices. arthritis.org
- 21 of the Best-Selling Assistive Devices You Can Buy on Amazon. creakyjoints.org
- Assistive Devices for Easier Living With RA. webmd.com
- Total Knee Replacement Surgery Considerations. arthritis.org
- Young BL, Watson SL, Perez JL, McGwin G, Singh JA, Ponce BA. Trends in Joint Replacement Surgery in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis. J Rheumatol. 2018 Feb;45(2):158-164. doi: 10.3899/jrheum.170001. Epub 2017 Dec 1. PMID: 29196384.
- Mohanty SS, Mishra N, Patil P, Desale A. Functional Evaluation of Patients Undergoing Multiple Joint Replacements: A Retrospective Study of 50 Patients with a Minimum of Six Months of Follow-up. Cureus. 2016;8(10):e830. Published 2016 Oct 15. doi:10.7759/cureus.830.
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