All about arthritis

Arthritis is a condition that causes pain and inflammation in one or more joints. It can affect anyone, but it’s more common in older adults. The main symptoms of arthritis, joint pain and stiffness, tend to worsen with age.1 There are many different types of arthritis and many people with joint problems say that it affects their quality of life.However, knowledge and support about the disease can help you to take back control and keep doing the things you love.

What causes Arthritis?

There are many different types of arthritis, and therefore many different causes. For example, gout is caused by too much uric acid in your body. For some types of arthritis the exact cause is unknown.3

Other causes of arthritis may include;4,5

  • A family history of arthritis
  • Infection
  • Immune system dysfunction
  • An abnormal metabolism
  • Repeated joint injury
  • Age
  • Obesity
  • Other conditions (secondary arthritis)
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What is the most common type of Arthritis?

 The most common type of arthritis in the UK is osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis causes joints to become painful and stiff. Some people also experience swelling, tenderness and a crackling sound when moving the affected joints. The severity of these symptoms varies from person to person.5

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How is arthritis diagnosed?

If you think you may have arthritis, or are struggling with symptoms, you should visit your doctor.

They may decide to give you;6

  • A physical examination
  • Blood tests
  • X-ray
  • CT scan
  • MRI scan
  • Ultrasound

How is arthritis treated?

There are many treatments that may help reduce arthritis symptoms.

NSAIDs (Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as ibuprofen may be recommended. These medicines can help relieve pain whilst also reducing inflammation. Your doctor will discuss what type of NSAID they recommend, and the risks or side effects associated.7

Physiotherapy may be recommended to help you improve your fitness and muscle strength. A physiotherapist may also suggest using heat or ice packs, or TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation).7

 Some people find that acupuncture, performed by a trained and experienced practitioner, may help to relieve arthritic symptoms.8 Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese medical treatment which involves inserting needles into specific parts of your body. It is important to find a licensed and certified acupuncturist, and speak to your doctor before trying acupuncture.9

Managing your weight can have a big impact on arthritis symptoms, as extra weight puts more pressure on your joints. Losing weight can help you to improve your mobility, decrease pain and prevent future damage to your joints.9

Supports and braces can help to ease joint pain and protect mobility. Using a brace may allow an injured joint to heal. For example, an unloader brace may help people with knee pain as it moves pressure onto the outside of the knee, rather than the inside. It is important to find the right support or brace for your symptoms. Ask your doctor or physical therapist about trying supports and braces.10

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How common is arthritis?

Arthritis currently affects around 10 million people in the UK11, and more than 350 million people have arthritis globally.12 It is more common in women, apart from gout, which is more common in men.13

If you need support, Versus Arthritis have a helpline for support and advice. Visit https://www.versusarthritis.org/get-help/ for more information. You can also visit https://www.versusarthritis.org/in-your-area/ to find arthritis support groups in your area.

Flarin 200mg soft capsules. Contain ibuprofen. Relief from joint and muscular pain, pain of nonserious arthritic conditions (caused by joint inflammation), back pain. Always read the label.

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