Living with Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) generally affects people between 30 and 50 years old. In most cases, women are more likely to be affected by RA than men.
It is quite common to know someone that has RA. You may be suffering from RA or you probably know someone who does. If that is the case, you will know how bad joint stiffness feels early in the morning, and what inflamed knuckles look like.
Appropriate understanding of the disorder will lead to healthy lifestyle choices in dealing with this autoimmune disease. Better familiarity on concepts of RA can help support your current health condition.
What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory, chronic autoimmune disorder wherein the immune system is attacked by foreign bodies like viruses and bacteria. You may also experience hand pain, mainly in the knuckles and joints. It also affects the wrists, elbows, shoulders, knees and feet. Other non-joint structures of the body may be affected such as the lungs, eyes, nerves and skin. Feelings of discomfort usually worsen and develop over the weeks and months.
The Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Joint pain, tenderness, swelling or stiffness for six weeks or longer
- Warm, tender, and swollen joints
- Loss of appetite
- Low-grade fever
Managing Rheumatoid Arthritis On Your Own
The following self-care measures may help manage symptoms.
Regular low-impact activities such as walking can increase your muscle strength. This will improve your overall health and lower pressure on your joints.
Foods that are rich in antioxidants and omega fatty acids, can aid in reducing your pain and inflammation.
Applying Heat or Cold
The application of heat provides pain comfort while relaxing your painful muscles. Cold application has a numbing effect and reduces muscle spasms.
The pain and physical implications brought by rheumatoid arthritis may affect your personal, work and social life. Speak to a health care professional so you may learn the strategies that will work best for you. Although, traditionally, medications have been turned to, you may want to research and seek other options that are natural, less invasive, and promising. Talk to us today to see how we can be of help.