Arthritis is a chronic condition of the joints that causes pain and stiffness. While it is a deteriorating disease that can be simple to understand, it is certainly not easy for the millions of Americans who live with it. Many people find that it worsens with age and stays with them for the rest of their lives. While a variety of treatments can help the symptoms, such as by decreasing pain, stiffness or inflammation, arthritis has no known cure.
There are many types of arthritis — over 100, in fact — but the most common types are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid. Osteoarthritis is the most common type and is a degenerative type that causes the bones to rub against one another because of a gradual loss of cartilage. Rheumatoid is the most common type of inflammatory arthritis, caused by an overactive immune system. The condition can also be caused by infections or by metabolic breakdown of the cells leading to a buildup of uric acid crystals in the joints.
Treatment mainly focuses on finding ways to decrease pain and stiffness, helping the person become more mobile and helping them enjoy a great quality of life. Individuals may take over-the-counter analgesics or more powerful prescription medications. They may also use at-home treatments, such as heating pads or cold packs. Lifestyle changes, such as eating an anti-inflammatory diet, can also help. However, one easy and safe treatment option that some tend to overlook is chiropractic care.
If you have never before gone to a chiropractor, you may think that all one does is crack the back or neck. However, a good chiropractor can use dozens of techniques and treatment options to treat the whole body, including the joints, muscles and back. In fact, some treatment options seem to mimic parts of a good physical therapy session. You may require soft muscle manipulation, ultrasound treatments, electrotherapy or traction to stretch joints. A good chiropractor can improve the range of motion of joints affected by arthritis and can reduce pain and stiffness.
Chiropractic care is particularly useful for those suffering from degenerative arthritis, such as osteoarthritis. However, you and your provider will need to be careful if you have one of the many types of inflammatory arthritis. You will know that you have found a careful practitioner if he or she takes a full history and physical from you at your first visit and examines your body. X-rays may also be a part of your care plan.
When you are trying to find the right arthritis chiropractor, it is important to find one with experience in caring for patients with this disease. You should also look for a chiropractor who listens to your needs and wishes, who treats you as an individual and with whom you feel comfortable.
We specialize in this type of care at La Grange Chiropractic, and we are sure that when you meet our dedicated providers, you will never look elsewhere for a great chiropractor. Contact our office in La Grange, KY today to schedule your first appointment and learn more.