Most people develop some degree of osteoarthritis especially as they get older. The changes are permanent and exist even when there are no symptoms. Osteoarthritis affects people in varying degrees. Some people may be symptom-free or suffer only mild or intermittent pain provoked by episodes of increased use or minor trauma. For some people symptoms can be disabling and, when it involves the larger joints of the body such as the hip or the knee, the severity of the problem may require surgical treatment. Wear and tear of our joints may occur due to ageing, injury, prolonged poor posture, over use of joints, or excess weight.
Osteoarthritis is one of 150 different forms of arthritis for which there are different treatments. Treatment may include Chiropractic SMT and/or natural anti-inflammatory supplementation. Treatment methods may include gentle passive movement, heat, electrical treatments, muscle stimulation, hydrotherapy, exercises to increase strength and increase range of motion, splints and advice on preventing further joint damage through self management.
Chiropractors are highly qualified in the assessment and treatment of the effects of osteoarthritis.
- Reduce pain.
- Improve range of motion- movement and posture.
- Strengthen supportive muscle groups.
- Improve independent function.
- Assess and treat bio mechanical problems that may exacerbate the pain and loss of function.
Whilst rest is an important part of managing your osteoarthritis, it is usually balanced with exercises and activity. In particular rest is required when joints are HOT, SWOLLEN OR PAINFUL.
Specific exercise prescription is also a proven therapy in the management of arthritis.
Signs and Symptoms
- Recurring pain or tenderness in a joint.
- Stiffness, particularly early morning stiffness.
- Swelling in a joint.
- Obvious redness or heat in a joint.
- Inability to move a joint.
Exercises help by
- Maintaining or increasing movement.(range of motion)
- Improving joint lubrication and nutrition.
- Restoring muscle balance.
- Improving circulation.
- Improving strength and stability.
- Improving poor posture.
Don’t forget to maintain your GENERAL FITNESS LEVEL. This helps you feel better and retain your healthy joints. Gentle regular exercises such as swimming, exercising in water (hydrotherapy), walking or cycling are recommended.