Osteoarthritis (OA) occurs when cartilage, which acts as a cushion at the end of most bones, gets worn away, resulting in bone on bone contact. This degenerative joint disease is the most common type of arthritis and can cause pain, stiffness, and difficulty moving. Unfortunately, arthritic degeneration of joints does not reverse although the pain can be combatted with the help of physical therapy. When symptoms of arthritis are present, it can be difficult to perform daily tasks. Treatment should be sought out to help alleviate the pain symptoms and improve your body’s range of motion.
Where is my osteoarthritis pain coming from?
Osteoarthritis can be a result of genetics or it can be related to a trauma like a torn cartilage injury, dislocated joints, or a ligament injury. ACL strains have also been linked to an increased risk of developing osteoarthritis later in life. OA may also be a “wear and tear” disease, linked to repetitive strains in the workplace for example. If your job involves a lot of physical labor, kneeling, squatting, or climbing stairs, you could be at a greater risk for osteoarthritis.
When should I seek treatment for osteoarthritis?
If you have a family history of joint pain or you’re experiencing symptoms that are in line with osteoarthritis, it’s a good idea to get checked out by a medical professional. Seeking out physical therapy for treatment can help to alleviate some of the pain symptoms, allowing you to move about more freely and perform daily tasks, pain-free.
How can physical therapy help with osteoarthritis?
Your physical therapist will work with you one-on-one to conduct a full body evaluation that will analyze your biomechanics and movement to pinpoint the cause of your pain. They may incorporate a variety of treatment techniques, such as:
• Manual therapy to increase mobility in your muscles and joints and to improve their function, flexibility, and strength.
• Custom strengthening exercises to target muscles surrounding the joints and remove stress, increasing stability throughout the body.
• Patient education to learn the proper posture and body mechanics that should be used for common daily activities. This can help to cushion joints and lessen the pain.
Physical therapists can provide the necessary tools to treat osteoarthritis, allowing you to return to your favorite activities pain-free and better than ever! To learn more about osteoarthritis or to eliminate any current discomfort, book a physical therapy assessment today.
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“I was very pleased with the amount of time the physical therapists spent to get me feeling better and moving better as soon as possible. Their goal is not only to get you moving well without pain, but moving correctly.”