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10 Things doctors want you to know about arthritis

Arthritis is characterised by inflammation of one or more joints, causing minimal to extreme pain. Here are some facts about arthritis that doctors want you to know.

Arthritis By Himanshu Sharma / Jul 17, 2015

It is more than just aches and pains

Arthritis is believed to be a medical condition about joint aches and pains. Other than severe damage to the joints, it can even affect your organs and skin. One of the common forms of inflammatory arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis can affect internal organs.

It’s a variety of diseases

Arthritis is not just one condition but more than a 100 different conditions. Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis, which causes wear and tear of the cartilage.

Symptoms can vary from person to person

You may experience symptoms different from another arthritis patient. The most common symptoms of arthritis are stiffness, pain, swelling and limited range of motion. Moreover, the symptoms may not be constant, can come and go, or worsen gradually.

Cracking knuckles doesn’t cause arthritis

One of the most prevalent arthritis myths is that cracking knuckles causes arthritis. According to a study done at the Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center, cracking knuckles does not cause any damage.

Wear and tear more likely to be the cause than genetics

Arthritis is not all about genetics, though family history is a risk factor for arthritis. Wear and tear of the joints is the most common cause of arthritis. Other than genetics, being overweight, older, having a joint injury or stress on the joint increases your risk for arthritis.

Newborns can have arthritis too

Arthritis is seen as a disease of the elderly, though it is not always the case. Babies and young adults can have some types of arthritis. Unexplained fever, swollen lymph nodes, limping, and a failure to thrive are some of the symptoms of arthritis in newborns.

What you eat matters

When it comes to arthritis, it does matter what you eat. There are certain inflammatory foods such as red meat that can worsen the symptoms of arthritis. Weight gain can lead to complications, which is also closely related to eating.

Physical activity can make the difference

If you have arthritis, don’t be afraid to exercise assuming it can worsen symptoms. Exercise can help and not hurt. If you know the right exercises, they can work as medicine.

Surgery is not always required

Surgery is the least common treatment option for arthritis. The condition is perceived to be chronic, but it can be put into remission. Once that is done, surgery is not required.

Rush to doctor if you suspect something wrong

Aches and pains related to arthritis persist longer than usual. If at any point of time you feel or suspect something is not right, don’t wait to see a specialist.

(Images:Getty)

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