Can Physical Therapy Help Arthritis? PART I
Arthritis is a general term for inflammation that causes redness, warmth, stiffness, tenderness, and/or pain within one or more joints in the body. Arthritis is a broad reference to more than 100 forms of joint diseases, affecting about 54 million adults (1 in 4 adults) in the U.S. Nearly 300,000 infants and children in the U.S. have arthritis or a rheumatic disease.
A common cause of chronic pain, as well as the leading cause of disability among adults in the U.S., arthritis often worsens with age, and more women than men experience doctor-diagnosed arthritis.
Even though arthritis is common, physical therapy offers much help for arthritis sufferers.
Arthritis and Comorbidities
The term “comorbidity” means that a person is experiencing more than one health problem at the same time. Comorbidities are also more common among those who have other chronic health problems. For example:
- 31 percent of obese adults also have arthritis
- 47 percent of diabetic adults have arthritis, and
- 49 percent of adults with heart disease also have arthritis
Arthritis is more common in women who are overweight or obese, while more men experience arthritis after sports injuries.
Types of Arthritis
Among the various types of arthritis, osteoarthritis is the most common, followed by gout, fibromyalgia, and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Cartilage is the hard, slippery tissue that covers the ends of bones at the joints of the body, and in osteoarthritis, cartilage breaks down in a wear-and-tear manner over time.
In rheumatoid arthritis (RA), the person’s immune system is affected by targeting the joint linings on both sides of the body, such as in both hands or both knees. RA may also impact the skin, eyes, lungs, heart, blood, or the nerves in the body.
Other less common types of arthritis include:
How Can Physical Therapy Help?
Physical therapy can have a tremendous impact on those suffering from arthritis pain. If you are one of those people in pain right now, there is good news: Here at Physical Therapy Now, we have the experienced staff to help you manage that pain and feel much better! We focus on movements and exercises that are utilized specifically with patients just like you with arthritis.
Call us today to schedule your first appointment to learn more about how we can help at (800) 481-4582. And don’t miss our next blog. We’re telling you more about how physical therapy can change your life as you manage your arthritis pain.