Types of Arthritis
Arthritis involves the inflammation of bone joints. The inflammation is accompanied by pain. There are several types of arthritis. Osteoarthritis is due to the wear and tear of cartilage. Another type arthritis known as rheumatoid arthritis is caused by an overactive immune system. These two are the most important types of arthritis. The causes of the disease are wide and varied. Over three million people are affected by it. It is diagnosed by physical and blood tests. It may take months to properly diagnose the disease. Rheumatoid arthritis has several natural remedies which help to keep it in check.
Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis
The causes of rheumatoid arthritis are not known. What is known is that it is an auto-immune disease which attacks the synovial membranes that cover the joints. It causes swelling and pain. It finally destroys the joints. Rheumatoid arthritis is not due to old age or hard work. The disease progresses with age and there is no cure for the disease at present. Heredity may be a factor in the onset of the problem.
Effects of Rheumatoid Arthritis
With the progress of the disease knee joints, wrists, elbows, shoulders, hips, feet and ankles will be affected. It causes swelling, pain and stiffness of the joints. The joints may turn red in color. In the initial stages a person may feel the stiffness early in morning for a few hours after getting up from the bed. The stiffness may wear off after an hour or two. As the disease progresses stiffness will last much longer. The other symptoms of the disease include fatigue, skin lesions and dry eyes.
Deformities due to Rheumatoid Arthritis
As the disease progresses deformities are likely to occur. Fingers may lose their function because of the ruptured tendons. This is called the ulnar drift. Another deformity called the Boutonniere deformity, deforms the joints of the finger. The Swan neck deformity makes the finger to look like a swan’s neck. All these deformities cannot be medically treated and require surgery.
The disease can cause swelling of the heart lining and shortness of breath. Early diagnosis of the disease and aggressive treatment are essential to control the disease.
The disease is treated by medication, exercises and weight loss. Certain adaptations to protect the joints are also used. Certain diets and supplements for the treatment of disease are also recommended. Changes in lifestyle are also essential to protect the joints.