Arthritis, characterized by inflammation of the joints causing painful stiffness and swelling is often regarded as a disease of older people. This is not true as it affects people of all ages, children inclusive.
It is estimated that about 10 million people are affected by arthritis in the UK out of which about 15,000 are children and young people while approximately 27,000 are below the age of 25.
Different types of arthritis
There are many types of arthritis but the two most common types in the UK are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
This type of arthritis affects the cartilage lining the joint causing it to degenerate such that the bones in the joints rub together. The result of this is that movement becomes painful, stiff and difficult.
More than 8 million people are affected by this most common type of arthritis in the UK and it is known to develop in people over the age of 50, which is not to say that it cannot occur at any age.
Osteoarthritis can also be as a result of another joint related condition or injury and commonly affects the hands, spines, hips and knees.
Though not as common as Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid arthritis is estimated to affect more than 400,000 people in the UK with about 12,000 cases diagnosed each year.
Unlike Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid arthritis happens when the immune system attacks body tissues and eventually affects the joints causing pain, swelling and eventual change in the joint’s shape.
Rheumatoid arthritis can also affect internal organs as such people suffering from this type of arthritis have been known to develop problems with other tissues and organs of their body.
This type of arthritis is more common with women and often occurs in people between 40 and 50 years old.
What are the symptoms of arthritis to look out for?
It is important to visit a doctor for accurate diagnosis if you experience which include:
- Joint pain, stiffness and swelling for more than two weeks
- Inability to move the joints properly
- Muscle weakness
- Inflammation within and around the joint area which has not abated after two weeks.
- Affected joint is warm with red skin patch around it
- Certain risk factors have been found to be responsible for the development of arthritis.
What ages does arthritis most commonly occur in?
Although arthritis especially Osteoarthritis is known to affect people of all ages, children inclusive, about 70 percent of arthritis sufferers are above 65 years of age with its severity varying from person to person.
Arthritis is more common and severe in women than men and affects especially the hands and knees.
People who are overweight are also more prone to arthritis because there is more pressure on the joints due to additional weight especially at the hips and knee areas.
Daily activities whether at home or at work also is a risk factor, for instance, when doing a job that involves repetitive kneeling, it becomes likely that arthritis will develop in the knees
Finally, any damage caused by injury that might have seemed to completely heal sometimes reappears as arthritis later in life in the form of osteoarthritis
While there are many tips for living with arthritis, Arthritis sufferers are now being offered fresh hope to manage and cure Arthritis. At Kuer Physio Harley Street we understand how painful and restricting arthritis can be. We diagnose and offer interventional pain medicine for arthritis. We are not just your conventional clinic but are regarded as London’s Leading Pain Consultants. So give us a call today for that life changing solution to arthritis.