Did you know that 1 in 5 Australians over the age of 45 have osteoarthritis ( according to Physiopedia) . I am sure you’ve heard this term before but do you really know what happens to the joints? It’s basically inflammation of the joints. This happens because the cushioning on the bones that form the joint wear out. Have you heard the crunching in your knees when you go up the stairs? or the grinding under your knee cap when you squat? These are all examples of normal wear and tear in the cartilage as we age. But osteoarthritis can also happen after a bad injury in a joint. Like after a car accident, if you end up having chronic pain. However, there’s so much information about this particularly common problem. I bet you didn’t know what I’m going to tell you now.
Yes, you heard me right. Which means if your mother or grandmother had it, does not mean you’ll end up with osteoarthritis too! Isn’t that great news? It just means you have to look after your body a bit better. There is a weak link between inheriting a higher tendency to get arthritis but not the disease itself. Of course what’s also not advertised enough by these big pharmacy companies is that some amount of wear and tear is a normal part of ageing. You don’t always need medications for that! I can totally understand if the pain is unbearable but there are other way to deal with that. Which gets me to our next fact.
Yup, I’m a physio talking about nutrition. Have you ever noticed increased in pain after eating certain acidic foods like lemons or tomatoes? If you haven’t, pay close attention to how you feel after. This is because certain foods are known to increase the inflammation in our body leading to more pain. Who knew! There’s more and more research now about the link between nutrition and chronic pain. In fact, even dairy can affect your pain if your body is sensitive to it. Wouldn’t it be nice to tweak what you’re eating to decrease the amount of pain? Hmm, worth a thought.
Having osteoarthritis is not a life sentence. It is possible to live a healthy and happy life by controlling the pain. You don’t need to rely on medications for the rest of your life. Physiotherapy is really the mainstay of treatment to manage your pain. And I’m not just saying this becase I’m a physio. It is evry effective in increasing blood flow to the arthritic joints and increasing the movement. By reducing the muscle tightness and strengthening the joint, we ensure the best results. Of course like anything else you have to put in the work to help yourself too. So if you’re ready to get control of your osteoarthritis, give us a call and we’ll guide your way to recovery.