Arthritis means inflammation of a joint. A Frequent joint cracking, stiffness in the joints especially in the early morning which get better after showering indicate the first signs of osteoarthritis.The joints most susceptible to osteoarthritis are the knees, hips, fingers and the vertebrae.

Signs and symptoms of Osteoathritis:

  • Joint pain (often a deep, aching pain) that gets worse when you move and better when you rest the joint (in severe cases, a person may experience constant pain)
  • Stiffness in the morning or after sitting or lying down for more than 15 minutes
  • Joint swelling and tenderness
  • Joints that are warm to the touch due to inflammation
  • Limited range of motion
  • Muscle weakness and compensation (caused by favoring the painful joint)
  • Growth of bony knobs near joints (such as Heberden's nodes, in which bumps appear on the outermost finger joints)

What Causes Osteoarthritis?

Most of the time, the cause of osteoarthritis is unknown. It is associated with aging. However, metabolic, genetic, chemical, and mechanical factors can play a role in its development. Overuse and wear and tear of certain joints can also result in osteoarthritis later in life (commonly seen in athletes). I do find that an over consumption of foods that cause inflammation in the body will make the symptoms of osteoarthritis worse in general.

Risk Factors

  • Being older
  • Genetic predisposition
  • Being overweight
  • Injury to the joint
  • History of inflammatory joint disease
  • Metabolic or hormonal disorders (such as hemochromatosis and acromegaly)
  • Bone and joint disorders present at birth
  • Repetitive stressful joint use (such as athletes or construction workers might experience)
  • Deposits of uric acid crystals in joints

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