Managing The Common Forms of Arthritis

Arthritis is a medical term used to cover a broad range of diseases. To most people, arthritis may simply means having pain and inflammation in the joints, however, it’s often a bit more involved than that. Arthritis is a term derived from Latin phrase “arth” which means joint and “ritis” standing for inflammation. More than 100 different kinds of illnesses are associated with arthritis. This disease may range from less complex forms such as tendonitis to more complex and chronic forms such as rheumatoid arthritis. Treatment usually involves musculoskeletal therapy to slow the progression of the disease.

Common Forms of Arthritis


Osteoarthritis the most common of the different types of arthritis. Self reported estimates form the Australian Bureau of Statistics suggest that roughly 1.8 million Australians (8% of the population) suffer this form of degenerative joint disease. It occurs when cartilage that surrounds the end of bones starts degenerating leaving the joints not cushioned. When the joints begin to rub together it may result in stiffness and pain. In other cases, there may be loss of motion due to excessive grating of bones. Deformity may occur when the grating wears the joints on one side. Osteoarthritis is more commonly found in women and occurs more regularly in the elderly population. If you’re suffering from this condition, we can help with Osteoarthritis treatment tailored to you. Osteoarthritis treatment

Rheumatoid arthritis

This is the second common type of arthritis and is the most severe People begin experiencing symptoms of this type of arthritis at ages between 25 and 50 years. However, it may also affect children and the elderly. Rheumatoid is the most common of the inflammatory arthritis types  and it is considered an autoimmune disease, where the body attacks its own tissues inappropriately.

Other factors besides wear and tear of the cartilage may contribute to this disease. It can also affect other organs in body such as the heart, lungs, and eyes. In people with rheumatoid arthritis, they may show symptoms in both sides of body for example, both hands may be affected. Both legs and wrists may also be affected.

Among the symptoms you are likely to experience are pain, swelling, stiffness, and redness of skin. A person may also have low-grade fever, weight loss, and fatigue. In addition to affecting the joint, this disease gives an overall feeling of sickness. Periods of remissions can occur where the symptoms disappear meaning during that time, individuals can lead a more normal life. According to the 2007-2008 National Health Survey, approximately 428,000 Australians are affected by rheumatoid arthritis.


Fibromyalgia is a form of arthritis which doesn’t necessarily affect joints. It instead causes pain and inflammation in muscles, tendons, ligaments, and soft tissues found under the skin. Patients who have this disease tend to experience tender spots under their skin, which are painful when pressure is applied. Symptoms include fatigue, depression, sleeplessness, and pain.

arthritis treatment

Anklyosing Spondylitis

This is a disease affecting the spine. Patients with this disease will experience symptoms such as stiffness and back pain, which may last for upwards of 3 months. They have difficulty sleeping, low-grade fever, fatigue, and weight loss. It affects up to 2% of Australians and is three times more common in men than women.


Gout is another form of arthritis that affects the big toe joints, but it can also extend and affect the knees, ankles, fingers, wrists, and heels or elbows. People with gout arthritis will experience symptoms such as redness, pain, swelling and warmth of joints.

Cervical Arthritis

This is a disease affecting the upper back. It can result in pain in arms and neck. It is caused by deterioration of the cartilage, which protects the discs. A person with cervical arthritis will experience chronic neck pain though other symptoms such as muscle weakness, headache, loss of balance, and stiffness may occur. It is caused by age related wear and tear on the neck and spinal region.

Infections Arthritis

It is a disease caused by an infection— it may be viral or bacterial infection. Usually, the onset of the disease is sudden and a patient experiences swelling, soreness, leakage of tissue fluid, warmth, chills, and fever.

Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis

It is a form of arthritis that affects children. Children with this disorder will show symptoms such as swelling, stiffness of joints, and pain. The symptoms are more severe when a child wakes up in the morning, or after having a nap. While there is no known reason as to why children tend to have an onset of this disease, at time, they are able to outgrow it and the symptoms will disappear, unlike adults. If your child is suffering from this condition, contact us about organising a juvenile rheumatoid arthritis treatment program.

Taking Action Against Arthritis

In summary, arthritis is a term referring to a collection of diseases, which mainly involve inflammation or swelling, and pain of muscles and joints. There are many kinds of arthritis affecting a large percentage of the population. In case you suspect that you could be suffering from arthritis, you may want to seek help of a physical therapist or an exercise physiologist like us to find out the form of the disease and the treatment options available. the treatment and management of arthritis is guided by five basic principles: Stop the disease process, keep your joints active, prevent deforming joints, reconstruct affected joints, and rehabilitate. Our team of medical professionals are trained in all of these aspects and can help you maintain a quality of life you are used to.

When you seek treatment in advance, you can manage the condition before it becomes worse and causes more damage to the body. Some of these conditions may not have cure and may be treated by managing and controlling the symptoms. Proper monitoring is needed to make sure timely treatment is obtained whenever symptoms appear.

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