More than a third part of the world’s population has arthritis, inflammation of joints and other chronic joint problems. Cases have nearly doubled during the last 20 years and this condition affects 1 in 3 women and one in the 4 men. Currently there is an outbreak of overweight and obesity with levels reaching about 60 per cent of the world’s population and there is a strong relationship between this rise and the projected rise in arthritis cases.
Arthritis is a general term for longer than 100 conditions that affect the joints-places where bone meets bone such as your elbow or knee in which the cartilage-the natural shock absorber that cushions the insides of the joints begins to break down causing pain and swelling. Arthritis a slowly evolving degenerative disease stealthily sneaking up on its victim over many years or even decades and can severely damage the joints. This is an important cause of pain and physical disability in older adults.
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Joint pain is closely associated with a person’s body weight as this increases the load and puts extra load on the weight bearing joints (back, hips, knees, feet, and ankles) and hastens the breakdown of cartilage. Overweight adults literally squeeze the life out of their joints and are most likely to develop arthritis than normal weight adults with the hips and knees bearing the pressure of the extra weight.
Another important contributing factor to become the victim of arthritis is lack of muscular strength around the joints. Without this support the joint bears the brunt of the shock and impact from our everyday activities hastening degenerative changes. More and more of us are living an increasingly sedentary lifestyle and putting our health in jeopardy with all the comforts of our modern world.
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There is no single treatment that applies to anyone who suffers from arthritis. A medical specialist will develop a management and treatment plan designed to minimize your specific pain and to enhance the function of your joints with your personal input. A number of treatments can provide short-term relief. They include: medications such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, the use of warm and cold packs, using a splint or a brace to protect painful joints, or maybe using muscle-relaxing massages.
The pain of arthritis can be severe in overweight individuals and can be used as a barrier to physical activity. Then, a vicious cycle is created when decreased activity leads to further increased weight. These in turn leads to further pain. To break this cycle you have to change your attitude and behavior to make the necessary amendments in your lifestyle to help yourself.
By strengthening the muscles, tendons and ligaments through strength training exercise they become stronger around the joints and the better able they’re to assist and protect them, even those that are weak and damaged from arthritis. Strengthening exercise also helps keep the joints as flexible as possible, improving joint mobility and allowing improved physical function. Your exercise program can also enhance weight loss and promote long-term weight management in those with arthritis who’re overweight.
The old adage ‘use it or lose it’ is true and one of the most serious things a person with arthritis can do is sit around and rest. A proper exercise program that includes at least 60% strength training exercise is a lifestyle choice that you require to make to avoid the progression of arthritis and to enhance the quality of your life.
Remember, exercise is better for you no matter what your condition; you do not have to spend the end of your life in a painful and hurting body. So get started right away and begin reaping the many wonderful advantage of a balanced exercise program.