Has your senior loved one experienced joint pain? This would be considered normal if this pain is something that they don’t have to deal with every day. Otherwise, you should be getting them immediate medical attention and help since they may already be experiencing arthritis joint pain.
Arthritis can surely hamper the elderly’s movement as sufferers of this disease may also have stiffness and swelling in the joints. And did you know that arthritis in elderly patients may vary for each individual since there are more than 100 kinds of arthritis?
Below are ones you may already have heard of.
Osteoarthritis – is the most common kind of arthritis that affects around 27 million people in the US alone. The rubbery material which covers each end of our bones are called cartilages. People with osteoarthritis have cartilages that erode over time. As the cartilage wears down, pain and swelling occur in the joint. In its advanced stages, the bones of the joints where the cartilages used to be attached may also break down and result in growths of bone spurs, causing even further damage to the joints. This disease is prevalent among people above 65 years old.
Rheumatoid Arthritis – This occurs as a result of the body’s autoimmune response as it attacks the joint tissues. Pain usually comes in pairs for those suffering from RA, meaning that it can occur on both hands (on the joints of each of the fingers). Other symptoms may include difficulties in sleeping, burning and tingling sensations in the hands and feet, and numbness.
Gout – For those who have been consuming food that contributes to the body’s production of high levels of uric acid, they better think twice, especially if their family has a history of this disease. The accumulation of uric crystals may build up in either the joint of your big toe or your knee (even in your wrists). This causes swelling and intense arthritis joint pain that can last as long as several weeks. You should be more careful once you already have experienced gout, as the pain can get possibly worse each time it recurs.
Spondylarthropathies – Frequent sufferers of back pain may think twice about taking their condition lightly. Spondylarthropathies is a hereditary form of arthritis (that commonly occurs in the caucasian demographic) and the symptoms may include bone loss/destruction as well as pain and stiffness. If left untreated this condition may result in spine deformation, and shoulder and hip dysfunction.
If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with Arthritis, there are some ways for you to possibly help them cope better with the disease.
Get them the right treatment – Depending on the kind of arthritis and the health condition, your senior loved one may need to take a group of medications to lessen arthritis joint pain, such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and some over the counter pain relief such as ibuprofen, aspirin, etc.
Encourage them to observe a proper diet. – Together with getting the right treatment, it is suggested to consult a physician to find out which diet would be appropriate for the condition and make sure that your senior loved one follows his or her recommended meal plan.
Motivate them to exercise – You may be surprised that prescribed exercise may possibly help maintain joint movement depending on the senior’s condition since exercise helps strengthen the muscles around the affected joints. Moreso, a healthy weight can lessen the pressure on the joints.
If you feel that arthritis in elderly relatives is too difficult for you to handle, then you may also opt to get help from a reputable and trusted home care provider.
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