Arthritis is a condition involving inflammation of one or more joints of the body. There are many different types of arthritis including Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid arthritis.
This is the most common type of arthritis. It is a chronic condition characterised by the breakdown of the joint’s cartilage and degeneration of the joint surfaces. The breakdown of cartilage causes the bones to rub against each other, causing stiffness, pain and loss of movement in the joint. Osteoarthritis commonly affects the hips and knees.
This is a chronic disease, mainly characterised by inflammation of the lining of the joints. It can lead to long-term joint damage, resulting in chronic pain, loss of function and disability. Rheumatoid arthritis commonly affects the smaller joints of the body such as the fingers and hands.
Physiotherapy forms an important part in managing arthritis. It can help one to maintain independence by decreasing pain and improving strength, mobility and flexibility.
Physiotherapists can devise simple exercise programmes that you can practise at home to help you build your strength and flexibility. Other treatment modalities include:
- Posture assessment and correction
- heat therapy
- pain relief techniques, such as electrotherapy
- Advice regarding management and daily activities
Worried you may be showing early signs of arthritis? Book an exploratory session with one of our physiotherapists using our handy appointment form.