Helpful tips on avoiding and preventing arthritis pain and more.
You have pain in the neck with some radiation of pain into the shoulder and visit an orthopedic doctor that your primary doctor recommended. After a couple of x-rays he tells you that the problem is due to arthritis and that you can take some medication, as you may have done other times you were in pain to relieve the discomfort. Should you believe this tried and true diagnosis?
Another example I have seen in some pain reliever commercials is pain when you try to open a bottle top or manipulate simple things with your hand or wrist, which by the way may actually be shoulder or hip mechanical dysfunction through what is referred to as the kinetic chains. Often, doctors will also suggest that they can take an x-ray of the part, yet the problem may actually be another part of the body that is working poorly, causing the hand, arm or digits to hurt in the absence of osteoarthritis.
While it is true that many of us are likely to develop some osteoarthritis as we get older and may not have any pain, which may mean that pain and osteoarthritis may not be as linked as many of us have been taught to think. , While it is also true that extensive joint damage done when we are younger may attribute to osteoarthritis, the reality is that not everyone has the same degree of degeneration, or osteoarthritic changes in our spines and extremities. It is also true that some who have received good management of their problems early on in life are more likely to have fewer problems later in life, and are less likely to endure a hip or knee replacement as a result of years of neglect.
It’s your body, and it is designed to last a lifetime, but unfortunately, the healthcare system expects your body to fit into its models of diagnostic parameters, which in many cases are unhelpful, wasteful and may never work because following a protocol is not the same as understanding and diagnosing your problem properly. The truth is; you are not a protocol and while diagnostic parameters have become the gold standard in today’s medical diagnosis, the reality is that the lack of a primary care system that takes the time to properly diagnose both your musculoskeletal and internal problem is a huge part of the problem of why so many of us are in such pain as we age unnecessarily.
While it is true that many of us who eat the wrong foods may suffer from low-level inflammation which can worsen osteoarthritis as we age, it is also true that those of us who were born with asymmetrical body mechanics that cause compensations we may not understand for years are often those who are going to have more problems as they age.
One of the ways to decrease inflammation in the body is to avoid many of the whites (sugar, refined flour, milk), as well as certain foods known to be inflammatory,
Another way is to take a supplement or spice such as Turmeric that has Curcumin as the active ingredient. Omega 3’s found in fish oil tablets are also known to have this effect as well because they reduce pain and inflammation naturally when taken in the right dosages. Using natural substances that allow for healing, unlike nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory meds that inhibit healing is a smarter way to decrease inflammation and pain.
Another thing that most people with chronic pain have in common is gait asymmetries, that can be improved using foot orthotics (to level the hips and improve the way the core works). You can read more about the reasons behind this by reading Cheating Mother Nature, what you need to know to beat chronic pain which is available through Amazon.com.
Soft tissue treatments such as myofascial release treatment, Active Release Technique (a style of myofascial release), and Graston Technique are helpful because they improve the way you move. Most people compliment these methods with chiropractic care. The most effective chiropractors employ active evaluation skills, soft tissue methods, and exercises that improve the way you function which can help reduce inflammation and improve body movement patterns as well.
Being overweight or obese can cause a huge amount of problems in the skeletal support structures, resulting in osteoarthritis, as well as other problems such as metabolic syndrome which may result in diabetes. Losing weight is a great way of improving the way the joints in our bodies work.
Recently, the New York Times also offered some insight into Arthritis and how to properly address and avoid long term problems that can in most of us be largely avoidable. Check it out below.
Don’t Take Osteoarthritis Lying Down
By JANE E. BRODY SEPT. 19, 2016
I have what may be the most common disease among middle-aged and older adults: osteoarthritis. But unlike many similarly afflicted, I don’t take it lying down. And neither should you.
In fact, you and your doctor should be paying more attention to it even before it happens, because if you live long enough, it almost certainly will develop in one or more of your vital joints. There is much you can do to forestall it, minimize its symptoms, and overcome the disability that can result.
Even what you eat and don”™t eat, as well as whether and how you exercise, can affect your risk of developing arthritis and your ability to cope well despite its effects on your joints.
Recent evidence indicates that osteoarthritis is not simply the result of years of wear and tear on the cartilage in important joints like knees and hips. Rather, it may be promoted, and perhaps initially caused, by chronic low-grade inflammation that is now also linked to other major chronic ills, including heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease, in which diet and exercise may play a protective role.