Arthritis is the most common disorder leading to crippling and deformity. It affects about 70 million Americans. Because there are more than 100 different kinds of arthritis, it is important to know what type of condition you’re dealing with.
Effective methods for dealing with arthritis include the following:
Medicines: Both over-the-counter and prescription anti-inflammatory medicines will help with symptoms. More specific disease-modifying medicines may be needed.
Exercise: This “treatment” helps to reduce fatigue, increase range-of-motion and movement, and also helps with self-esteem!
Rest: Proper amounts of rest help to conserve energy and allow the body to heal.
Thermal modalities: Heat and cold applied judiciously give short-term relief of pain and stiffness. These are also important adjuncts to an arthritis exercise program.
Self-help aids: These devices help patients with arthritis perform activities of daily living in a more efficient and less painful manner.
Joint protection: This helps patients perform tasks easier with less stress on the joints.
Self-help: This method of empowering the mind can help patients manage their symptoms better.
Surgery: When more conservative measures have failed, surgery may be required. Fortunately, this is becoming less and less of a need.
Despite everything, people with arthritis can lead a productive and less painful existence. Proper attention to detail and individualized therapy can make a big difference!
Dr. Wei (pronounced “way”) is a board-certified rheumatologist and Clinical Director of the nationally respected Arthritis and Osteoporosis Center of Maryland. He is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and has served as a consultant to the Arthritis Branch of the National Institutes of Health. He is a Fellow of the American College of Rheumatology and the American College of Physicians. For more information on arthritis and related conditions, go to: http://www.arthritis-treatment-and-relief.com