Deteriorating joints are a result of arthritis. Arthritis occurs when the joints and its surrounding tissues become inflamed. Arthritis is caused by chemical imbalances in the body, poor diet, genetic disorders and over-use of the joints.
The areas most affected by arthritis are the back and spine, neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, fingers, hips, knees, ankles and toes. Symptoms include:
- Painful, limited movement in the affected joints
- Increased heat and redness in surrounding tissues
- Dry, cracking sensation or sound coming from the affected joint
Degenerative Joint Disease (DJD) or Osteoarthritis
DJD is the degeneration of the cartilage on the ends of the bones. This affects the ability of the bones to move against each other. Cartilage in between the bones allows the bones to slide on each other, providing a stable movement at the joints. When the smooth cartilage between the bones becomes roughened from wear and tear, it causes friction between the bones, leading to pain in the joint.
In osteoarthritis, you will often see bone spurs on x-rays, and occasionally soft cysts (fluid filled cavities in the bones and/or joints. Osteoarthritis usually develops after the age of forty, affecting women three times more than men. Symptoms include:
- Joint stiffness
- Joint pain
- Reduced joint motion
- Redness and swelling in the surrounding
Chiropractic also helps treat arthritic symptoms. Chiropractic care will help correct biomechanical faults in any of the joints as well as the damage to the various joints.
There are some steps you can take now in order to prevent DJD. Diet is incredible important. Avoid foods which are too alkaline. This contributes to inflammatory and degenerative conditions.
Exercise also helps people with arthritis. It reduces joint pain and stiffness and increases flexibility, muscle strength, and endurance. It also helps with weight reduction which will put less pressure on the joints. The three types of exercise that are best for people with arthritis are:
- Range-of-motion exercises. This type of exercise helps maintain or increase flexibility
- Strengthening exercises that helps keep or increase muscle strength
- Aerobic exercises which improves cardiovascular fitness and helps control weight and improve overall function