If you’re living with arthritis, you know that daily activities such as climbing stairs or even walking can be difficult. Although arthritis comes in many forms, the most common type is known as osteoarthritis (OA). OA is caused by the wearing down of the joint’s cartilage. When the cartilage wears down, the joint’s bones may rub together, causing pain.
Although it can occur at any age, OA usually affects people over the age of 65. Symptoms of OA include:
- Pain during activity that gets better with rest.
- Swelling or stiffness in the affected joint.
- Stiff joints upon waking in the morning.
Managing arthritis pain
If you’re having joint pain, talk with a qualified orthopedic surgeon. He or she may recommend some simple, non-invasive options to help you find relief, including:
- Hot or cold therapy. Using a heating pad or taking a warm bath may ease stiffness. Some people find relief using ice packs for short periods of time. Your physician may recommend one or both, depending on your individual needs.
- Physical therapy. A physical therapist who is knowledgeable in arthritis can guide you through certain exercises to help with your pain and flexibility.
- Exercise. A low impact activity such as walking, biking, or swimming can significantly improve arthritis pain. Physical activity will also boost flexibility, relieve stiffness, and can help slow the development of the condition.
- Losing excess weight if necessary. Obesity can make arthritis symptoms worse. Losing weight can help reduce your pain, improve your overall health, and make further treatments such as surgery easier in terms of recovery.
- Medications. Today, there are a wide variety of medications available that may improve your symptoms. It’s best to talk with your physician about what medications will work best for you.
If these measures do not improve your pain, talk with your physician about total joint replacement. Over one million of these procedures are done each year, and the surgery has a very high success rate. A successful joint replacement can provide you with years of relief from your arthritis pain.
CarePoint Health is one of the first health care systems in the region to offer MAKOplasty® Total Hip Replacement procedures, performed using the RIO® Robotic Arm Interactive Orthopedic System at Hoboken University Medical Center. This state-of-the-art system enables your surgeon to align and place your new joint with precision that is typically not possible with conventional techniques. This highly advanced technology is customized for each patient, allowing your surgeon to deliver the best possible care for your unique needs.
Don’t let joint pain hold you back. Talk with one of our skilled orthopedic surgeons to get on the path to living without arthritis pain.
CarePoint Health's Bone Health program is designed to help prevent, detect, and treat osteoporosis and low bone density. To learn more about our orthopedic services, contact CarePoint Health at 1-877-791-7000.
Content on our website is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, please call 911. Always consult your physician before making any changes to your medical treatment.