Inflammation is one of the body's natural reactions to disease or injury, and includes swelling, pain and stiffness. Arthritis is a general term for a large group of more than 100 diseases. The word "arthritis" simply means "joint inflammation." Inflammation that lasts for a very long time or recurs, as in arthritis, can lead to tissue damage.
Whenever you think about the disease arthritis, an image of an elderly or injured person might come to mind. However, arthritis is a disease that transcends people of all age, sex, ethnicity, and ability. Some risk factors are preventable, while others are not. However, knowing what causes arthritis and how susceptible you are will keep you on the look out for arthritis signs and symptoms, meaning earlier diagnosis and treatment of the terrible condition.
Knowing what causes arthritis can be helpful in determining how at risk you are for developing arthritis. In order to determine your risk factor, you should examine your family history, past injuries, age, gender, and weight. Based on these factors, you might consider seeing a doctor yearly to check for the development of arthritis.
With arthritis, an area in or around a joint becomes inflamed, causing pain, stiffness and, sometimes, difficulty moving. Some types of arthritis also affect other parts of the body, such as the skin and internal organs.
The bones of a joint are covered with a smooth, spongy material called cartilage, which cushions the bones and allows the joint to move without pain. The joint is enclosed in a fibrous casing called the synovium. The synovium's lining produces a slippery fluid, called synovial fluid, this fluid nourishes the joint and decreases friction within the joint. Strong bands of tissue, called ligaments, connect the bones and help keep the joint stable. Muscles and tendons also support the joints and enable you to move.
Although the exact cause of arthritis is not be known, there are several risk factors for arthritis. (A risk factor is a trait or behavior that increases a person's chance of developing a disease or predisposes a person to a certain condition.) Risk factors for arthritis include the following.
One of the major causes of arthritis is obesity. The more obese a person is, the higher their chances are of developing arthritis, particularly in the knees. This is because excess weight increases the amount of pressure on the joints, which in turn causes cartilage to deteriorate even faster than it might otherwise. As little as ten additional pounds can put you at increased risk for developing obesity.
A main risk factors for developing arthritis is age. As people age, the likelihood of developing arthritis increases. Usually, arthritis begins to affect people after the age of forty.
Gender is another risk factor for developing arthritis. This comes as a surprise to most people; however, arthritis does occur more commonly in women than in men. Furthermore, women are more likely than men to develop various types of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis can begin in women as young as thirty.
Ethnicity and genetics also can increase the risk of developing arthritis. Although more research needs to be done regarding what role these arthritis causes have in the development of the condition, you might be able to determine how at risk you are for the disease by simply looking at your family history.
We have all heard someone complain about an old injury flaring up? Well, they might not be far off. Past severe injuries, such as those from accidents, can lead to an increased risk of developing arthritis in that particular area. For example, an old knee injury could lead to the development of arthritis in the knee.
Although it may not be possible to prevent arthritis, there are steps to take to reduce your risk of developing the disease and to slow or prevent permanent joint damage. Eating a healthy diet. A well balanced, nutritious diet can help strengthen your bones and muscles. Maintaining a healthy weight. Excess weight puts strain on your joints. Exercising. Keeping your muscles strong can help protect and support your joints. So what causes arthritis? Know one really knows for sure.[an error occurred while processing this directive]