Arthritis can occur at any time in life so you could be affected by it at the age of 25 or even younger. Even children have been diagnosed with this condition which can be very painful as it stems from inflammation in the joints of the body.
How many types of arthritis are there?
There are many types of arthritis but the two most common are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis:
- Osteoarthritis affects many millions of people and is more common over the age of fifty. However, this does not mean that you cannot experience the disease at any age. It usually reduces the thickness of the smooth cartilage around the joints creating pain and difficulty with movement. If swelling occurs the condition is made worse. As the cartilage gradually reduces the bones rub together. You can find this most commonly in the hands, knees, hips and spine.
- Rheumatoid arthritis is also a very common condition and frequently shows itself between the ages of 40 and 50 years old. Woman tend to experience the condition more often than men. It is different from osteoarthritis as it occurs when the immune system has a negative effect upon joints in the body. This causes them to swell and become painful. The outer surface of the joint is usually the first point to be attacked and then it tends to spread eventually causing the bone/cartilage to break down altogether.
What are the less common forms of arthritis?
If you are unlucky enough to be affected by arthritis, these are some of the less frequently seen variations of the condition:
- Ankylosing spondylitis – inflammation of the bones and muscles in the spine.
- Cervical spondylitis – the same as above but this affects the neck.
- Fibromyalgia – creates pain in the tendons, ligaments and muscles.
- Lupus – this is an autoimmune condition that can impact upon many parts of the body.
- Gout – this is caused by the presence of too much uric acid in the body and it affects the joints, making them swell.
- Psoriatic arthritis – this tends to target those that already have psoriasis.
- Enteroptathic arthritis – this is linked to inflammatory bowel disease such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
- Reactive arthritis – causes swelling of joints, eyes and the urethra.
- Secondary arthritis – usually present after some type of joint injury or damage.
- Polymyalgia rheumatic – this affects older people and is created when the immune system causes pain and stiffness as well as inflammation of joints.
How will I know if I contract arthritis?
This can vary according to the type of arthritis that you have, but you will normally have similar problems to the following:
- Pain, stiffness and discomfort in your joints
- Joint inflammation
- Difficulty in moving certain joints
- The skin over the joints may be red or hot
- Muscles may become weak
What is juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA)?
This is a type of arthritis that affects only children but the good news is that it tends to improve as they grow older. The different forms of arthritis that affect younger people are Oligo Articular, Polyarticular, Systemic Onset and Enthesitis.
How do doctors treat arthritis?
Unfortunately arthritis cannot be eradicated altogether but it can be treated and the condition improved. Painkillers, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and corticosteroids are more commonly used for osteoarthritis. If the problem is severe then joint replacement, joint fusion or re-alignment of the bone can be carried out as a surgical procedure. Your doctor may also recommend such things as physiotherapy and gentle exercise to keep the joints moving.
Will arthritis affect my working life?
Whether you are at school or work, any form of arthritis can have a negative impact upon your life. You will need to pay more attention to your general level of health and fitness as well as look after your diet and physical mobility. Depending upon the severity of your case and your age, you may even need special adaptations made to your home. Each room in the house can be modified to assist you including the kitchen, bathroom and entry to the building. There are also various aids that can support you to get around in and outdoors such as orthopaedic leg trolleys and mobility aids.
Can I purchase pain relief medication if I have arthritis?
Yes there are a great many pain relief medications and remedies that you can purchase from your preferred online pharmacy or chemist. Here are just a few of things you might wish to try:
- Creams and gels
- Heat pads
- Food supplements such as glucosamine sulphate
- TENS machines
It really does depend on the severity of your arthritis and which type of the condition you are being affected by. By doing a little research on the internet and checking out online pharmacies, you will find a plethora of medication and aids to order codeine phosphate to enable you to manage your pain.
If you have already visited your doctor and he has carried out a medical assessment on you, if he diagnoses you with arthritis then he may recommend a suitable course of treatment. If your condition is very severe then operations can be carried out to replace joints such as hips and knees but of course these are fairly major procedures and do involve periods of recuperation and rest afterwards.
So as you can see, arthritis is a very common condition and can affect anyone, male or female, of any age and at any time. Even at the age of 25 or below you may be unlucky enough to be affected by this condition but you do not need to be despondent as there is plenty of help and assistance available. Whether this is in the form of pain medication, physiotherapy or surgical intervention, there are plenty of ways that you can continue to live an almost normal life despite being affected by one of the many forms of arthritis.
With medical research being carried out on a regular basis into this disease and the many forms of it, who knows what remedies the future may bring.