How Do You Deal With Arthritis?

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If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with arthritis, it is important to learn more about the disease and its potential impact. However, pinning down the facts about arthritis can be difficult. Despite striking 50 million Americans, arthritis is an often misunderstood disease with a core of common myths surrounding it.

 

Myth #1:
Arthritis is just minor aches and pains associated with getting older.
Fact: Arthritis is actually a complex family of musculoskeletal disorders consisting of more than 100 different diseases or conditions that can affect people of all ages, races and genders.

 

Arthritis is not just a disease of old age. Two-thirds of people with arthritis are under the age of 65, including 300,000 children.
Of the 50 million Americans with arthritis, more than 36 million are Caucasians, more than 4.6 million are African-Americans and 2.9 million are Hispanic.
Arthritis can take many forms, but three of the common diseases that make up arthritis are:
Osteoarthritis (OA), the most common form of arthritis, is a progressive degenerative joint disease characterized by the breakdown of joint cartilage associated with risk factors, such as overweight/obesity, history of joint injury and age. Read more about osteoarthritis.
Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), a systemic disease characterized by the inflammation of the membranes lining the joint, which causes pain, stiffness, warmth, swelling and sometimes severe joint damage.Read more about rheumatoid arthritis.
Juvenile Arthritis (JA) is an umbrella term used to describe the many autoimmune and inflammatory conditions that can develop in children ages 16 and younger. Read more about juvenile arthritis.

 

Myth #2:

Arthritis is not a serious health problem.

 

Fact: Arthritis places a growing burden on the health care and economic systems in this country.

 

Each year, people with arthritis account for 44 million outpatient visits and 992,100 hospitalizations.
Arthritis is the leading cause of disability in the United States.
Arthritis is actually a more frequent cause of activity limitations than heart disease, cancer or diabetes.
Within 20 years, the number of people with arthritis will soar. By 2030, an estimated 67 million Americans will have arthritis, unless the trend is reversed.

 

What can be done for the pain management of this disease then? There are medications, of course, and a lot can be done through different types of therapy. What if the medications, though, can systemically be damaging to other organs or cause side effects that actually make you feel worse? The answer is transdermal or topical pain relievers which are applied directly to the painful area. The medication goes down through the layers of skin and immediately relieves the arthritis pain.

 

What do you think about a different way of taking care of the pain?

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