Arthritis is probably one of the most misunderstood diseases. Honestly, if you ask the average person on the street what arthritis is, you won’t get an answer that even comes close. You just know that something hurts, but you don’t know exactly what or why.
Thus, it is a health condition associated with inflammation or swelling of the joints. Unfortunately, people with arthritis complain of discomfort, pain, and instability when the two bones that are attached to each other move the body.
Although any part of the body can become inflamed with arthritis, the usual places of weakness are the back, neck, hips, knees, or feet. Some conditions can be devastating and even life-threatening problems because they can affect other parts of the body, such as muscles, bones, and internal organs.
Types of Arthritis:
There are over a hundred types of arthritis. But the most common types of diagnosis are rheumatoid arthritis, gouty arthritis, and osteoarthritis.
1. Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is a disease in which the body’s immune system attacks the body’s tissues. Most of the damage occurs to the joint lining and cartilage, which leads to inflammation of the synovial membrane surrounding the joint and eventually erosion of the two opposing bones. The disease often occurs in the fingers, hands, elbows and knees. It can affect people under the age of 20, but most often affects women over the age of 40.
2. Gouty Arthritis
Gouty arthritis or simply “gout” is caused by the accumulation of uric acid crystals in the joint cavity, causing inflammation. There is another rare type of gout, called “pseudogout”, which is caused by the formation of rhombic crystals of calcium pyrophosphate. Gout usually appears in just one joint in the early stages, but sooner or later it can affect many joints and often become swollen or worse, lose function. This form of arthritis usually affects men between the ages of 30 and 50.
Osteoarthritis is a disease that is caused by regular wear and tear of the joint. It affects the larger joints of the body, such as the back, spine, hips, and pelvis, which are typically weight-bearing joints. It starts in the cartilage and then pushes two opposing bones together, causing constant pain in the affected person. Osteoarthritis is common in people over the age of 50, 30% of which are women over the age of 65. Although there are hundreds of types of arthritis, one thing is certain – for all sufferers, it is joint damage that causes the same pain, misery and inactivity. Arthritis is a serious condition that everyone must fight so that men and women of all ages can avoid debilitating effects and enjoy long-term mobility.