Pain Relief for Arthritis
Push Arthritic Pains Away with Physical Therapy
Are your joints stiff and achy when you wake up in the morning, but seem to dissipate as the day progresses? If so, you may be experiencing the effects of early-onset arthritis. Arthritis is a common condition that millions of Americans are diagnosed with. While the pain can be managed with physical therapy, many patients wait until their arthritic symptoms become severe before seeking help. If you are suffering from arthritis, or you think you might be, our physical therapy practice is here to help. Our dedicated physical therapists will diagnose your condition and treat you accordingly, in addition to decreasing your risk of sustaining arthritis-related injuries. Contact Focus Physical Therapy today to schedule an appointment and get started on your first steps toward relief!
Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis – Defined:
Osteoarthritis is the most commonly experienced type of arthritis, which generally makes it easy to diagnose. Osteoarthritis can develop a few different ways – for example, a sudden injury to a joint can lead to osteoarthritis, or it can develop over time, even after the injury has healed.
Consider this scenario: you’re a football player who took a harsh blow to the knee during a game. You undergo the required treatment, you recover, and you return to the game. However, you continue to notice lingering pains in your knee, even after you end your football career. Even if your injury healed completely, it is still possible for osteoarthritis to occur later in life, especially if you continued running and jumping on the affected joint.
The same is true for labor-intensive careers. If you have a job where you have to swing tools in repetitive motions (such as a carpenter or roofer), your joints are at a higher risk of developing osteoarthritis. Obesity can also lead to osteoarthritis (or act as a contributing factor) because additional strain is put on the hip and knee joints from carrying the extra weight.
Rheumatoid arthritis is a bit different from osteoarthritis and it is not as well understood. It is the second most commonly experienced form of arthritis, and it develops as an autoimmune response. Here’s what happens: when someone has rheumatoid arthritis, their immune system sees the joints as a threat. Because of this, the immune system attacks the joints, resulting in pain and inflammation.
While research is still being done in order to better understand rheumatoid arthritis, many experts believe that your hormones, medical history, and environment could all be contributing factors. Since rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition, rather than an injury or general “wear and tear” like osteoarthritis, it is common for the same joints to be affected on both sides of your body.
Are you experiencing these symptoms?
Did you know that arthritis is the leading cause of disability across the United States? According to the Arthritis Foundation, approximately 50 million people live with arthritis. Because it is so commonplace, it is important to understand the symptoms.
Osteoarthritis occurs when joints wear down. This can be due to repetitive overuse of the joints or the natural deterioration that comes with age. The “wear and tear” of osteoarthritis can cause severe pain in the joints, as the cartilage is no longer acting as a cushion and shock absorber. Without thick cartilage, the bones begin to rub together, resulting in tight, sore, and painful joints.
Some common symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis (also referred to as “inflammatory arthritis”) may also include painful swelling, joint deformity, or bone erosion. This can result in tenderness, stiffness, weakness, or “pins and needles” sensations.
Arthritis can greatly limit daily life, making it difficult to work, exercise, and participate in leisure activities. Any type of arthritis may result in similar symptoms. A common report amongst arthritic patients is a feeling of stiffness within the joints as soon as they wake up, with the discomfort fading throughout the day. It is also common that joints may feel sensitive or painful to the touch, with “popping” or “clicking” sounds occurring with movement.
Contact Focus Physical Therapy:
Anyone suffering from the aches and pains of arthritis could greatly benefit from physical therapy. When you schedule an appointment with Focus Physical Therapy, you’ll be greeted by one of our licensed physical therapists who will determine your best course of treatment through a thorough evaluation. Treatment plans will be dependent upon the nature of your condition and your personal medical needs. They will include specific techniques for alleviating your arthritis pain, which may include manual therapy, ice and heat therapies, or other modalities. They may also include additional services as needed, such as weight management techniques to help ease some stress on your joints, and/or posture improvement to relieve stiffness and prevent injury. Treatment plans for arthritis cases are aimed at relieving pain and decreasing the amount of inflammation, stiffness, and overall stress placed on the joint(s). If you have arthritis, or you think you may be experiencing arthritic symptoms, contact our physical therapy office today at Newhall, Santa Clarita, CA to consult with one of our physical therapists. Get pain relief for arthritis. Push arthritic pains away today with Focus Physical Therapy!
Because arthritis is a catch-all term, pinpointing what causes arthritis may be difficult. In most cases, arthritis is caused by overuse, wear and tear, or injuries. It is also possible for arthritis to be caused by infections, such as Lyme disease, an immune system dysfunction, such as rheumatoid arthritis, or an abnormal metabolism, which can lead to gout.
There are over 100 different types of arthritis, containing monoarthritis (where only one joint is affected) and oligoarthritis (where multiple joints are affected). Some of the most common forms of arthritis are osteoarthritis, which develops from “wear and tear” of cartilage, and rheumatoid arthritis, which develops from overactive immune systems.
Targeted exercises can help ease your arthritic pains. It is possible to maintain an active lifestyle while living with arthritis, but you may need some assistance. Your physical therapist will conduct a physical evaluation to determine what the best course of treatment will be for you. Your physical therapist will then guide you through prescribed gentle exercises that become more intensive as you progress in your treatments, in order to help you achieve your highest levels of physical capability.
Regardless of the cause of arthritis, physical therapy plays a major role in the treatment of its symptoms. Physical therapy should always be the first method of treatment, before resorting to more aggressive procedures, such as surgery. In fact, in many cases, physical therapy can even eliminate the need for risky treatment methods altogether, such as harmful pain-management drugs or invasive surgical correction. If the condition is severe and surgery is required, physical therapy can also help you prepare and recover from your procedure