Osteoarthritis, although a disorder occurring in old age, can affect young people too. What exactly is osteoarthritis? It is a condition in which the cartilage in the joints, which act as cushioning between two bones, start wearing away. This causes the bones of the joints to rub against each other, thereby resulting in pain, stiffness, swelling, inability to move freely and sometimes the formation of bone spurs. Also, the bones become susceptible to more damage because the shock absorbing capacity is decreased.
The most common cause of osteoarthritis is age and almost everybody will develop some degree of this disorder at some point. However, there are risks of developing this disorder at earlier ages too. The possible reasons are listed below.
- As already discussed, age is one of the main reasons for the wearing off of the cartilage tissues.
- Excess weight causes a lot of increased pressure on the joints, especially knees, thereby causing the cartilage to wear out faster, leading to osteoarthritis.
- Some people develop osteoarthritis in the knee due to inherited abnormalities from previous generations.
- Women are more susceptible to this disorder than men. Women above 55 years are likely to experience osteoarthritis in the knee.
- The occupation of an individual can also be a reason for this disorder. Those individuals who have jobs in which repetitive stress to the joints is normal, they tend to suffer from osteoarthritis in the knees earlier.
- Athletes who are involved in football, tennis, running, etc. are also susceptible to osteoarthritis in the knees. However, regular and moderate exercise helps in strengthening the joints and thereby decreasing the risks of this disorder.
- People with metabolic disorders, who have excess iron or excess growth hormones, tend to have a higher risk of osteoarthritis.
- Engaging oneself in a number of physical activities causes an increase in pain, but it gets better with rest.
- Swelling around the knee area occurs.
- Joints feel warm.
- The knee becomes stiff, which occurs most when one has been sitting for a long time.
- Mobility of the knee is decreased and it becomes difficult to sit and get up after sitting.
- Crackly and creaking sounds are heard when the knee moves.
There are various treatments of osteoarthritis, but one of the main remedies is weight loss. Doctors recommend certain specific exercises to reduce pain. For medications, certain anti-inflammatory drugs and pain relievers are suggested. There are many more treatment methods, but these are some of the most effective ones. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult with Orthopedic Doctors in Pune and get answers to your questions!