Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common joint disorder, which is due to aging and wear and tear on a joint. Osteoarthritis is a normal result of aging. It is also caused by 'wear and tear' on a joint.
- Cartilage is the firm, rubbery tissue that cushions your bones at the joints, and allows bones to glide over one another.
- If the cartilage breaks down and wears away, the bones rub together. This causes pain, swelling, and stiffness.
- Bony spurs or extra bone may form around the joint. The ligaments and muscles around the joint become weaker and stiffer.
Often, the cause of OA is unknown. It is mainly related to aging.
The symptoms of OA usually appear in middle age. Almost everyone has some symptoms by age 70. However, these symptoms may be minor.
Before age 55, OA occurs equally in men and women. After age 55, it is more common in women.
Other factors can also lead to OA.
- OA tends to run in families.
- Being overweight increases the risk of OA in the hip, knee, ankle, and foot joints because extra weight causes more wear and tear.
- Fractures or other joint injuries can lead to OA later in life. This includes injuries to the cartilage and ligaments in your joints.
- Jobs that involve kneeling or squatting for more than an hour a day put you at the highest risk. Jobs that involve lifting, climbing stairs, or walking also put you at risk.
- Playing sports that involve direct impact on the joint (such as football), twisting (such as basketball or soccer), or throwing also increase the risk of arthritis.
How can Physical Therapy help OA?
We can work on energy conservation techniques as well as strengthening exercises to make your muscles strong, this will take stress of your joints. We will prescribe Personalized exercise programs to help reduce the stress on your joints. The Goal of Metro Physical Therapy is to improve your independence and quality of life by improving movement and function and relieving pain. Metro Physical Therapists are experts in prevention of pain and prescribing proper personalized exercises.