Osteoarthritis Management

dreamstime_s_23250676-300What is osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a condition where cartilage (the protective covering over the ends of your bones) becomes thin and starts to wear away.

This cartilage is what stops the bones in your joints from rubbing against each other.

Damage to cartilage can cause your joints to:

  • become painful, stiff or swollen
  • feel like they might lock up or give way

NOTE: It is also possible to have osteoarthritis and not feel any symptoms at all.

What causes osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis has no specific cause, however we know several factors lead to it’s development including:

  • excess weight
  • previous injury to a joint
  • overuse
  • genetics

The most common symptoms are stiffness, particularly first thing in the morning or after resting, and pain.

Affected joints, most commonly the hands, spine, hips and knees, may get swollen after extended activity.

 

How to manage osteoarthritis

dreamstime_m_47191045-300

One of the most beneficial ways to manage osteoarthritis is to get moving.

 

While it may be hard to think of exercise when the joints hurt, moving is considered an important part of the treatment plan.

 

Studies show that simple activities like walking around the neighbourhood or taking a fun, easy exercise class can reduce pain and help maintain (or attain) a healthy weight.

 

  • Strengthening exercises build muscles around osteoarthritis-affected joints, easing the burden on those joints and reducing pain.
  • Range-of-motion exercise like pilates helps maintain and improve joint flexibility and reduce stiffness.
  • Aerobic exercise helps to improve stamina and energy levels and also help to reduce excess weight.

At Strive Physiotherapy Drummoyne we can help you manage osteoarthritis so you can keep moving well.  Call us for an assessment and advice regarding safe and beneficial exercises for you to do on 9819 6151.

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