Osteoarthritis, also known as Degenerative Joint Disease, affects over 20 million Americans. While the disease is mostly associated with aging and the elderly, there are a number of factors that can contribute to the onset of osteoarthritis. Obesity, family history, loss of bone density, lack of exercise, and a history of joint problems all put someone at a higher risk of developing the condition.
That said, there are many ways to alleviate the symptoms – and the pain – of osteoarthritis, and improving patients’ overall wellbeing. Visiting your Peoria Chiropractor is one.
Osteoarthritis causes a progressive wearing down of cartilage, and since cartilage is what helps our bones glide over one another, when the cartilage is no longer able to perform its function, our bones end up rubbing as opposed to gliding against one another. This condition causes pain, discomfort, swelling, and interferes with our ability to move.
The typical symptoms of osteoarthritis include:
Constant joint pain
Stiffness in the joints after a period of rest
Swelling in the joints
A “crunching” sound or sensation in the joints
Sometimes, however, the symptoms of osteoarthritis may be aggravated by other conditions. The earlier a diagnosis is made, the earlier a patient can receive the appropriate course of treatment for his or her individual case.
Exercise and osteoarthritis
Exercise has been shown to strengthen the muscles around the joints, helping to maintain joint function and movement. Moreover, exercise plays a significant role in weight management, and promotes a sense of general wellbeing, causing a significant decrease in the severity of osteoarthritis symptoms.
When exercising, keep the following in mind:
Try low-impact activities such as walking, stair climbing, and water aerobics
Avoid lifting heavy weights, as these may strain your joints
Make use of strengthening exercises for specific muscle groups
Pay close attention to your body’s signals. They should tell you when to slow down or stop altogether
Your Peoria Chiropractor is able to identify the degenerative changes in the joints, and assess their impact on the spine, hips, knees, and other joints.
Moreover, your Peoria Chiropractor is a trained expert with a whole range of techniques and methods for improving joint function, and helping to reduce osteoarthritis symptoms such as pain and swelling. With the aid of spinal manipulation, massage, nutritional counseling, symptoms of osteoarthritis can be significantly reduced. In addition, your Chiropractor Peoria can recommend a specific exercise program for your needs, and suggest supplements and other natural remedies that address osteoarthritis in every stage.