The bones in our body are connected by joints that assist in movement. The joints also offer support to the whole body by effectively bearing the overall weight of our bones and body. Therefore it is important to always have proper joint health. However, joint pains are quite common and it can impact any area of the body, starting from legs and hands to shoulders, ankles and hips. Usually, joint pains are referred to as arthritis. In arthritis, the joints tend to become inflamed as the cartilage goes through wearing and tearing. This leads the bones to rub frequently against each other and this causes the pain. As one gets older, the chances of having joint pains also increase. The pain can be severe or mild and in some cases it can be quite debilitating. While there is no permanent cure for such joint pains, there are some treatment options that can manage the pain and minimize the severity.
The nature of pain in arthritis
About 20% people suffer from arthritis. The level of pain can vary depending on the form of arthritis. During the initial stages, the pain is felt predominantly while performing some specific activities such as walking on uneven surfaces, climbing the stairs and sitting and squatting in cross-legged position. With the progression of the condition, this pain is felt continuous and it can be felt with greater frequency even while performing routine activities such as walking a short distance. Hence it is always a good idea for a person to consult with an orthopedic if he or she has been suffering from joint pain for some time. The orthopedic is going to evaluate the pain using clinical examination and imaging techniques like X-rays.
Types of arthritis
There are many different forms of arthritis and let’s have a closer look at some of them.
Osteoarthritis is the main form of arthritis and it is caused by joint inflammations resulting from degeneration of cartilage. The cartilage offers cushioning to the bones by surrounding them but as it wears away, it exposes the bones which lead to pain.
Rheumatoid arthritis is a type of autoimmune disease wherein the tissues of the body are mistakenly attacked and depleted by the immune system. It leads to chronic inflammation of the joints. The condition may also attack other bodily organs.
Gouty Arthritis is caused by the presence of too much uric acid in the blood. It gives rise to sudden burning pain along with swelling and stiffness of joints.