Arthritis is a painful condition that affects thousands of Americans. Treatment for your arthritis can seem confusing and unfamiliar. Depending on the type of arthritis you’ve been diagnosed with, your treatment may vary from other arthritis sufferers that you know. Here’s some important information to know if you’ve been diagnosed with arthritis.
Types of Arthritis
There are multiple forms of arthritis, which can affect you differently and be caused by different causes. Arthritis can come in a number of forms, but some types are far more common than others.
The Top 3 Types of Arthritis:
- Osteoarthritis: Wear and tear on your joints cause damage to the cartilage, which causes pain and stiffness.
- Rheumatoid Arthritis: An autoimmune disease that causes inflammation and joint damage if left untreated. When RA occurs in children, it is known as juvenile rheumatoid arthritis.
- Psoriatic Arthritis: Inflammation of the skin (Psoriasis) can also be accompanied by inflammation of the joints. It can begin in childhood, but most sufferers are between 30 and 50 years old.
Medication for Arthritis
Medication treatments for arthritis come in two forms: treatment for symptoms of arthritis and treatments that suppress inflammatory disease. Medications can help patients live more comfortably with their condition, as well as address the causes of their condition.
The symptoms of arthritis are often treated with painkillers to reduce the swelling and discomfort fo arthritis. Common medications include:
- Analgesics: Painkillers are often the first defense to help treat the pain of arthritis. Often, these are over-the-counter medications.
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs): These medications reduce stiffness and swelling. Often, they are over-the-counter-medications and can be combined with painkillers for more powerful pain relief.
- Steroids: These powerful anti-inflammatory medications can be administered as a shot directly to the affected joint, or in tablet form.
Treating the Inflammatory Disease
- Disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs): These medications suppress inflammation and treat the underlying disease. These are effective against inflammatory types of arthritis and connective tissue diseases.
- Biological therapies: A newer class of drug, these medications are used to treat inflammatory types of arthritis when traditional disease-modifying medications haven’t worked. Biological therapies work by blocking the messages between white blood cells, which cause inflammation.
Physical Therapy for Arthritis
A course of physical therapies can be highly beneficial for arthritis symptoms. These therapies can include:
- Hydrotherapy: Exercise in a warm-water pool. The water supports your weight and places less pressure on your joints while you exercise.
- Physiotherapy: Improving your strength through specific exercises that are tailored to your condition and needs. It can also be combined with pain-relieving therapies such as ice or heat packs.
- Occupational therapy: Practical advice to help sufferers manage everyday tasks, choose specialized aids and equipment to ease pain and help support movement, protect their joints from further damage, and manage fatigue.
Surgery for Arthritis
If the damage to your joint is severe enough, you may need surgery to correct the issue. Joint replacements are a common surgical solution to damaged joints to relieve the pain of arthritis. There may also be other reconstructive or pain-relieving operations available to you.
Discuss your options today with our Ft. Meyers pain management team. At the Pain Medicine Group, we are committed to helping you find solutions to your pain. Our state-of-the-art facility uses advanced technology to ensure that you receive leading treatment options from our highly trained staff. Don’t live with pain anymore. Schedule an appointment today to learn how we can help your specific situation.
Contact our team online or by calling (888) 832-3597.