Osteoarthritis is a Pain! Physical Therapy Can Help
As we all age, our bodies experience a certain “wear and tear” on cartilage and joints. This can cause inflammation and pain, known as arthritis. According to the American Arthritis Foundation, osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis and tends to develop in people as they age. It can certainly take a toll on your body, resulting in achy or painful joints after exercise, after a long day on one’s feet, or even after prolonged periods of inactivity, thus causing joints to constrict.
The most common areas of osteoarthritis are found in the fingers, hips, knees, and spine. These are all joints that we use excessively, even in our daily lives. Just think – by the time you lift yourself out of bed, shower, brush your teeth, eat breakfast, and prepare to begin your day, you’ve already used these joints a multitude of times. Therefore, it isn’t surprising that pain can occur in them over time. If you believe you may be experiencing osteoarthritis, contact RENEW Physical Therapy today! One of our dedicated physical therapists would be happy to meet with you to discuss pain relief strategies.
Why do we experience osteoarthritis?
While it is true that osteoarthritis is most common in older folks, that is not always necessarily the case. It is possible that osteoarthritis can present itself in younger adults, especially if they are prone to weak joints, poor dieting, or if they aren’t very active. Your cartilage works hard to protect your joints by absorbing the natural shocks that your body experiences on a daily basis. The likelihood of developing osteoarthritis is dependent upon the physical and nutritional lifestyles in which you partake. Joint alignment can change and the muscles around a joint can weaken over time, causing the cartilage to shift or thin. As the cartilage wears down, osteoarthritis becomes much more common.
As osteoarthritis progresses, more symptoms can arise. The most common symptoms of osteoarthritis are:
- Joint pain.
- Swelling or tenderness in or around the joint(s).
- Inflammation or flare-ups of pain in the joint(s) after use.
- Feeling stiff after sitting or lying down for prolonged periods of time, especially when getting up in the morning.
- Crepitus – also referred to as a “cracking or crunching” feeling when moving the joint(s), or the sound of bone rubbing on bone.
How can physical therapy help osteoarthritis?
According to the Arthritis Foundation, over 50 million adults and 300,000 children are living with arthritis. Physical therapy is one of the most common treatments for osteoarthritis, usually helping with the relief of joint pain in just a few sessions. If you have arthritis, don’t fret – there is hope! While anti-inflammatory and pain medications will help for the time being, they are very much a short-term solution. Physical therapy can help in actually strengthening your joints and muscles once again, allowing for a much healthier and long-term pain relief solution. Physical therapy will also help in learning to use your joints in new ways once again, allowing for the highest quality of life, no matter how severe your arthritis has become.
Our physical therapists are trained to help you with joint alignment, stability, muscle regeneration, and most importantly, pain relief. They are dedicated to helping you get back to your normal levels of mobility. Don’t settle for a life of aches and pains – physical therapy can get you back on your feet and doing the activities you used to love! If you are suffering from osteoarthritis, Contact Us Today at Mandeville & Covington, LA Centers – we can get you back to living your best, most pain-free life.