Do you have painful swollen joints? Do you have persistent aching in your hands, knees or shoulders?
If so, you may have arthritis. What? You’re not that old? Around the world 1 out of 4 people, suffer from some form of this painful joint disease. Because it is so very common, a lot of myths and misconceptions have developed around this disease. This article seeks to explore some of them.
“But what actually is arthritis?”
There are over 100 distinct, incurable diseases, currently grouped under the umbrella term “arthritis”. Arthritis covers a variety of problems effecting the bones, joints, muscles, tendons and ligaments.
However it is most readily known for its effects on the joints in the body which allow us to move. Common signs are pain, stiffness, inflammation or swelling in joints and bones. Arthritis can also cause extensive damage to the cartilage, bones and inter parts of your joints.
Arthritis Misconception 1 – “It’s a disease for the old”
Myth! Millions of middle-aged men and women, children and young adults suffer from this painful aching condition. Anyone can have arthritis. Arthritis has no respect for age or gender.
Arthritis Misconception 2 – “It’s a disease caused by damp, cold environments”
Myth! Doctors and well- meaning individuals have encouraged arthritis sufferers to move to warmer climates as a “cure”. Warmer climates do lessen the feeling of pain and discomfort due to arthritis, but only to a point. Doesn’t everyone love being under a warm sun?
Arthritis Misconception 3 – “You get arthritis from eating a bad diet”
Yet another one bites the dust…to date there has been no research that connects poor eating habits to arthritis, with the exception of uric acid and gout. But maintaining as healthy a bodyweight as possible eases joint aches and lessens swelling.
Arthritis Misconception 4 – “Arthritis can be cured”
I wish I could say this was true! However, at this point in time, there is no cure for this painful disease. You need to be aware of the hundreds of quack cures or treatments that drain your wallet but don’t stop the pain. Every year scientific research is being done to find ways to control the damage and ease the pain that arthritis causes. Check with your health provider for the latest in treatments.
Arthritis Misconception 5 – “Arthritis causes only minor aches and pains”
Wrong! Wrong! Wrong! Arthritis is a debilitating disease and can change a person’s entire lifestyle. Pain from joint damage can be severe and as the joint destruction and deformities mount, arthritis patients can experience inflammation, chronic pain and fatigue therefore leading to depression and other health problems. You don’t need to suffer in silence when there is help.
Once you know about the five most common misconceptions of arthritis, you can take steps to learn how to treat this painful and troubling disease and regain your zest for life.