Arthritis means inflammation of the joints. Someone with arthritis will usually experience pain and difficulty moving the affected joints. There are many kinds of rheumatic diseases – the word rheumatic means aches and pains in joints, bones and muscles. The most common forms of arthritis are osteoarthritis (OA) which is degenerative or mechanical arthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis(RA) which is Inflammatory arthritis
Degenerative or mechanical arthritis is a group of conditions where the cartilage covering the ends of the bones becomes damaged. The bones then try to repair this damage but often an overgrowth of new tissue occurs altering the shape of your joint. Osteoarthritis can affect any of the joints in the body especially if it’s been badly injured. The most commonly affected joints are: knees hips neck and back, big toes and hands.
Rheumatoid arthritis is when your immune system – which usually fights infection – attacks the cells that line your joints, making them swollen, stiff and painful. Over time, this can damage the joint itself, the cartilage and nearby bone.
Inflammatory arthritis is an autoimmune disease. caused by your bodies immune system Your immune systems usual function is to fights infection but in the case of rheumatoid arthritis it attacks the cells that line your joints, causing inflammation that causes joints to become swollen and damaged. Over time, this will damage the joint the cartilage and nearby bone.
This often occurs for no obvious reason and can often affect ligaments surrounding the swollen joint. Other examples of inflammatory arthritis include reactive arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, and arthritis associated with colitis or psoriasis.
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Arthritis is not just a disease of older people – it can affect people of all ages, including children. It is not clear what causes arthritis and there is no cure at present. However, there is plenty you can do to manage your condition and lead a full and active life.
Change your diet; it can change the way you feel. The right foods can ease your stiff joints, swelling, and fatigue, and improve your overall health, while the wrong ones can exacerbate them. Try to reduce problematic foods and increase your daily intake of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Increase your fibre intake by eating brown bread and rice, cereal like weetabix and shredded wheat and drink more water to aid the increased fibre to move through the digestive system. Fibre helps move food and wastes through the digestive tract before they have a chance to form toxic substances that can cause inflammation.
EAT PLENTY OF
Whole unprocessed foods,
Vegetables particularly greens, fruits (except citrus) and red peppers which contain the pain relieving chemical capsaicin and asprin-
Low fat meat like chicken, turkey or fish -
Seeds, nuts and beans, especially brazil nuts and sunflower seeds which contain a chemical shown to have pain relieving, anti-
Grains and Pulses.
Oregano and rosemary which are both powerful natural antioxidants.
EAT LESS -
Saturated fats (animal fats), Saturated margarines, cooking oils -
Reduce your intake of acid-
Processed foods, white flour, Salt, Sugar, yeast, coffee and chemical additives,
NSAIDs help relieve pain and stiffness while also reducing inflammation. However, they will not slow down the progression of rheumatoid arthritis.. These drugs some of which are available over the counter, must be taken with caution, and over the long term tend to lose their effectiveness and can cause serious side affects. For more information see the Boots/NHS website.
The newest and most effective treatments for rheumatoid arthritis . Biologics are genetically engineered proteins derived from human genes. They are designed to inhibit specific components of the immune system that play a pivotal role in inflammation, a key component in rheumatoid arthritis.
Steroids Will help to reduce inflammation over the short term but have side effects.
They are sometimes used long term for severe rheumatoid arthritis but In most cases they are used temporarily to calm a symptom flare-
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