Is arthritis pain keeping you from enjoying a full and active lifestyle? If so, you’re not alone. Over 50 million Americans suffer from arthritis pain daily, and it’s the leading cause of work disability in the United States. Stiffness, swelling, joint pain, and inflammation are common problems caused by arthritis. Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis, with over 32 million people affected in the United States alone.
What is Osteoarthritis?
Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease caused by wear and tear. Most people over the age of 60 have osteoarthritis, but its severity varies. It usually affects weight-bearing joints such as the spine, hips, knees, and ankles. Cartilage is a firm, rubbery material that covers the ends of bones in normal joints. Its primary function is to act as a “shock absorber” as people move. As people age, the cartilage breaks down, and joints may begin to rub together, causing friction, stiffness, swelling, and pain. Even people in their 20s and 30s can get osteoarthritis due to a joint injury or repetitive stress from overuse.
Symptoms often begin with mild pain that gradually increases in severity over time. The pain can be overwhelming at times, impacting the simplest of daily activities. Over an extended time, the joint can become damaged and deformed. An X-ray, MRI, or other imaging is needed to diagnose osteoarthritis and determine the severity of the damage. It is essential to have your condition correctly diagnosed to more effectively treat the symptoms.
Causes and Risk Factors
Age is the number one risk factor for osteoarthritis. Individuals are also prone to developing this disease because of:
- Heredity (osteoarthritis can run in families)
- Gender (osteoarthritis affects women more than men)
- Joint overuse, stress, or injury
Treatment for Osteoarthritis
There is no cure for osteoarthritis, but various treatments can reduce pain and swelling. Lifestyle measures, including maintaining a healthy weight and regular exercise, are beneficial. Traditional medical treatments for osteoarthritis include pain medications, injections, and surgery. Physical therapy and regular chiropractic treatments have also been proven to help patients with osteoarthritis.
What Is Chiropractic Care?
Chiropractic care works on the musculoskeletal system that consists of bones, muscles, joints, cartilage, ligaments, and tendons. Chiropractic care has proven to be an effective alternative to traditional medical treatments for millions worldwide. In the United States, chiropractors are licensed following a multi-year doctorate degree and hundreds of hours of intensive training. Regular chiropractic visits can help decrease pain and help you learn how to prevent pain from returning. Chiropractic treatments improve spinal motion, relieve tight muscles, and improve posture, reducing pain and inflammation and the need for pain medications.
Treating the Symptoms
No one can cure your arthritis, but there are many ways to help alleviate the symptoms and slow the progression. Chiropractors use gentle spinal adjustments in conjunction with other treatments to relieve pain and improve mobility. These treatments could include:
- Therapeutic massage
- Physical therapy exercises
- Ultrasound treatments
- Hot and cold therapy
A comprehensive treatment plan that includes regular chiropractic care offers many benefits. You will see the benefits in pain reduction, but you will also likely see an improvement in your overall health and wellness with regular chiropractic adjustments. Some of the benefits of chiropractic treatments include:
- Reduced pain and inflammation
- Improved mobility and range of motion
- Improved endurance and flexibility
- Increased strength and muscle tone
- Reduced muscle tension
- Improved ability to perform daily tasks
Chiropractors will often recommend and demonstrate stretches and physical therapy exercises to help manage arthritic pain and increase mobility at home. They can also offer nutritional advice to help decrease inflammation and flare-ups.
The Bluffs Chiropractic & Family Wellness Team Can Help!
If you think chiropractic care might be the right solution for your arthritis pain, call The Bluffs Chiropractic & Family Wellness team today. After a thorough chiropractic assessment, we’ll develop an individualized treatment plan designed to meet your specific needs. Chiropractic treatments can help improve movement in joints and relax tight and spasmed muscles without using pain medications or invasive procedures.
If you’re ready to take the next step in achieving relief and overall wellness, contact The Bluffs Chiropractic & Family Wellness team today. Dr. Joshua Lippincott has been serving patients for over 12 years and is passionate about helping people achieve their best possible health. Contact us online or call (636) 326-2525 to schedule your initial consultation.