Living with arthritis

Arthritis is not just a single condition, it is actually a term that refers to more than 100 different medical scenarios that can affect the musculoskeletal system.

The symptoms most commonly exhibited by people suffering arthritis are stiffness, pain and inflammation in joints. Often there is damage present to the joint cartilage, and this can lead to joint weakness and instability.

Arthritic conditions can be debilitating, often preventing people from completing regular daily activities like driving, cooking and walking.

Millions of people suffer arthritis all across the world, and it is a condition often associated with ageing. However this perception can be misleading, because just as many people of working age develop the condition, not just old people.

Although arthritis is not a curable condition, there is a range of treatment options available to sufferers.

Your first responsibility is to speak to your local doctor, who will be able to advise you on medication or possibly surgical options.

One great way to combat arthritis is through exercise.

Getting the blood flowing and stretching out your joints is a great approach. In fact, staying active throughout life is a terrific way to prevent arthritis too.

Examples of exercises that are suitable for sufferers of arthritis are: swimming or water exercise, dancing, tai chi, low-grade strength training, waliking and low-impact aerobics.

Make sure that you don’t try to take on too much exercise at once. It is a better idea to ease into an exercise program and progress slowly.

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