Is Arthritis Preventable?

Arthritis is a chronic, painful condition that affects one-quarter of adults in the United States. What causes one person to get arthritis and another not to isn't known. But some risk factors can affect your chances of arthritis. Not all can be controlled, but you can take steps to lessen your chances of getting the disease by managing those you can.

At  Pro-Active Medical Center in Niceville, Florida, Brian Schuessler, DC, and our team can help you assess your risk for arthritis and help you make a plan for reducing it. If you have arthritis, we can help you decrease the symptoms and pain so you can live an active life without making it worse.

Uncontrollable risk factors for arthritis

Some risk factors for arthritis cannot be controlled. These include:

Controllable risk factors for arthritis

Certain lifestyle changes can decrease your risk of getting some types of arthritis and make the disease less painful and severe if you do get it.

Obesity

Just 10 pounds of extra weight adds 30 or more pounds to what your knees must support. Obesity can lead to earlier and more severe development of osteoarthritis (OA). According to research from the Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center, people in the highest weight range are 10 times more likely to develop OA than those in lower weight ranges.

Infection

If you have red, swollen joints, you should see a doctor immediately. An untreated infection can do damage to your joint and increase your chances of arthritis. Even if you don't see the effects immediately, this could be a factor in developing arthritis down the road.

Injury

An acute joint injury (like bending a joint the wrong way during sports) can cause joint damage and lead to arthritis. So can an overuse injury, like continual bending of your knees or elbows (common in construction jobs such as house painting or tile laying.)  

Smoking

Cigarette smoking will not only increase your risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis (RA), but it also can make the disease worse. And stopping smoking can have many health benefits beyond helping prevent arthritis.

If you want to know more about arthritis prevention and treatment, contact Pro-Active Medical Center at 850-347-0158 or use our online scheduling tool to book an appointment today.

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