What is osteoarthritis disease and why does it happen?
Osteoarthritis is one of the most frequent forms of arthritis, which is also known as degenerative joint disease or degenerative arthritis, and which can affect practically any joint in the body. However, those that are most usually affected are joints in hands, hips, and knees, though neck and lower back may be affected rather frequently, too. The reason why this disease develops is the deterioration or breaking down of the cartilage that cushions the ends of the bones in joints, and there are certain factors that have been identified so far to affect the development of this disease and to make some people more prone to it. Among them are weakness of muscles, injury of the joints, the process of aging, and obesity, while it is also possible that this disease can be hereditary. According to the statistical records, women are more susceptible to osteoarthritis than men, although it is not really clear why that is the case; and people who suffer from conditions such as gout, or rheumatoid arthritis, for example, are also at higher risk of developing osteoarthritis.
Complications of osteoarthritis
Since this is a degenerative disease, it means that it only gets worse with time, while the symptoms develop slowly. Unfortunately, it cannot be cured, but there are some methods of the treatment that are focused on relieving the pain and other symptoms, such as swelling, tenderness, stiffness, and the loss of flexibility. These methods include medications. various physical therapies and changes in lifestyle, although in some cases, several surgery procedures may also be a helpful solution. Besides these methods, alternative medicine is becoming more and more popular in the treatment of the symptoms, and of all the methods, acupuncture has proven to be very efficient and helpful, as well as yoga and tai chi.
As for the possible complications of osteoarthritis, they mostly consist of the pain and stiffness, which only decrease over time and become harder and harder to tolerate, or even affect the functioning of people, as well as performing some usual everyday activities. The progression of osteoarthritis may also lead to certain changes in the bones, and even bone deformity and formation of bone bumps. All of these problems can be the reasons why some people will have to stop working eventually, which may further lead to other problems such as frustration, depression, stress, etc.