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Osteoarthritis in the Elderly

With age, your loved one may experience inflammation in his or her joints, which may cause pain. This condition is called osteoarthritis and it may turn severe with time. Tucson home care experts discuss about osteoarthritis and how it can seniors.

What is Osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis is a joint disease that occurs with the breakdown of cartilage in the joints. The breakdown of cartilage can lead to pain and stiffness in joints and joint muscles. In its initial stage, the symptoms are less severe, but with the passage of time and lack of treatment the symptoms can turn severe and may also lead to swelling, weakness, and numbness in the arms and legs. Although, arthritis is normally linked with joint pain and stiffness, osteoarthritis can cause more severe damage to the joints.

Causes of Osteoarthritis

Damage to the cartilage is one of the primary reasons behind osteoarthritis in the elderly. However, there are a few other reasons too that can damage the cartilage and increase the chances of osteoarthritis. According to studies, genetic factors can increase the chances of osteoarthritis significantly. Plus, joint injuries in adulthood can also lead to osteoarthritis in the golden years. Women reaching or experiencing menopause have a very chance of developing osteoarthritis due to changing sex hormone levels. Seniors who have done physically demanding work in their younger days are also at a high risk of being diagnosed with osteoporosis. Diabetes is another emerging reason behind osteoarthritis and may cause severe damage to joint bones, muscles, and tissues and may lead to severe pain.

Symptoms of Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is only linked with joints and not with any other bone or muscle, so the symptoms are usually observed in the joints of seniors. The pain from osteoarthritis is relieved with rest, but as the day passes, seniors may start to observe serious pain. The joints may stiff and swell making it difficult for your loved one to even walk. Seniors diagnosed with osteoarthritis may feel their joints locked and may hear a cracking noise when the affected joint is moved.

Treatment of Osteoarthritis

Diagnosing osteoarthritis at an early stage is very important to eliminate the severity and to minimize the pain. Various diagnostic methods such as X-rays, arthrocentesis, and Arthroscopy are used to identify the disease. There are no perfect therapies and treatments to cure the disease, but  doctors recommend seniors to live a healthy lifestyle to delay the disease. Weight loss, rest, and regular exercise is very important to maintain joint health and prevent osteoarthritis.

Seniors diagnosed with osteoarthritis may find daily household chores tough. Such seniors should consider hiring professional home care. Tucson experts are trained to provide the ultimate care to seniors and to help them in daily household chores so that they could rest and prevent osteoarthritis.


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