What is osteoarthritis?
Osteoarthritis, also known as degenerative joint disease. Inserm gives the following figures: "Only 3% of the population under 45 is affected by osteoarthritis, 65% after 65 and 80% over 80". It is more common in women than in men. The disease affects the cartilaginous tissue sliding on the ends of bones that meet in a joint. Normally, the cartilage helps the bones to slide over each other.
In osteoarthritis, however, the cartilage is decomposed and eventually wears out. As a result, instead of slipping, the bones rub against each other, causing pain, swelling, and loss of movement. Although the majority of patients with osteoarthritis are aged 65 and over, recent studies show that osteoarthritis is not a byproduct of aging. Risk factors include:
Family History of Osteoarthritis (heredity)
Lack of Exercise or on the Contrary Joint Overwork
Previous Joint Injury (micro-trauma)
How can your chiropractor help you?
Chiropractors, can detect the first degenerative changes in the joints. They see the impact of degenerative changes in the spine, as well as hips, knees and other joints. Chiropractors are also trained to relieve pain and improve joint function through chiropractic manipulation, trigger point therapy, and soft tissue therapies such as massage and Active Release Technique.
Chiropractors can help you choose the exercises that are best for reducing joint pain. If a painful or swollen joint prevents you from exercising, talk to your chiropractor who will be happy to advise you.