May 21, 2009

Measures To Be Taken To Get Rid of Arthritis Stiffness

Posted in Category : Bone, Joint & Muscles Disorders

Arthritis is actually not a single condition but a group of conditions, all of which involve deterioration and inflammation of the joints. Apart from this common factor, the symptoms and causes of arthritis vary greatly. Rheumatoid arthritis is one of the most common forms of arthritis, in which the immune system malfunctions and attacks the joints themselves, resulting in inflammation, stiffness, and pain. Osteoarthritis is another common arthritic condition, and can be caused by an infection that reaches the joint, physical trauma to the joint, or simply as a result of old age. Another common type of arthritis is gout – in this type of arthritis, the inflammation, pain, and stiffness are the result of uric acid crystals forming in the joints. This in turn is caused by high uric acid levels in the blood, which may be due to lifestyle or dietary problems.

As you can see, each type of arthritis has a different cause and mechanism, and therefore there is no single treatment that will get rid of the joint stiffness or reduce the inflammation and pain. There are a few common measures that need to be taken, but for proper treatment of your specific condition, you need to consult your doctor.

One common requirement in managing arthritis is weight loss. This includes dietary modifications and exercise. The dietary modifications for weight loss are in addition to any changes that may need to be made to eliminate the cause of the arthritis. For example, treating gout requires a lot of dietary restrictions such as abstaining from red meat and seafood. (For other types of gout, fish may actually be beneficial, because it has anti inflammatory properties.) In addition to this, you need to reduce your intake of fatty foods and refined carbohydrates. Exercise is also important, not only to burn away excess calories, but also to strengthen the muscles, thus taking away some of the strain from the joints. However, it is important the exercise does not itself strain the joints. For this reason, swimming is the recommended exercise for people with rheumatoid arthritis, where the joints are already strained and deteriorating.

As far as other measures are concerned, the only home remedy that works for all kinds of joint stiffness and inflammation is a warm compress. This can be applied in any way that works for you, whether it is a hot water bottle, a heat pad, or a wet napkin.