Factors that can lead to a greater risk of OsteoArthritis?Because OsteoArthritis (OA) has so much to do with the wearing down of the cartilage in our joints, most people associate it with age. While it is true that people over the age of 65 are more likely to have OsteoArthritis, there are other contributing factors that can make OA worse or appear at an early age.
There are many Risk Factors for OsteoArthritis, and they can play out many ways without knowing it first hand. Some of these risk factors are preventable while some are not. There are things you can do to help lower the risk of OsteoArthritis. Knowing what these risk factors are is an important first step.
1. Being Overweight
Cartilage wears out over time because it experiences so much pressure and weight over the years. In fact, OsteoArthritis occurs more frequently in weight bearing joints such as knees, hips, and the lower back. When a person is overweight, it only adds more pressure to these joints, forcing them to work harder and causing the cartilage to break down even faster.2. Joint InjuryInjuries in joints can easily lead to the early development of OA. One major injury or several minor injuries can lead to situations where the cartilage in joints begins to break down. In some cases, the injury doesn’t even have to be in the joint. If an injury causes you to change the way you walk, for example, it could cause additional stress to the knee joint.3. Lack of ExerciseWhen we do not get enough exercise, our muscles weaken causing more stress in our joints. By staying fit, we ensure our joints stay strong and healthy as well as the muscles surrounding those joints. These are a few of the risk factors that we can help to prevent by paying attention to our physical health. There are factors that we have no control over. Aging, for example, plays a very significant role in the deterioration of the cartilage in our joints. Some people come from a family with a history of arthritis that is passed along genetically. Others are born with loose or odd-shaped joints. In these cases, there is nothing you can do to prevent the onset of OsteoArthritis. However, these conditions do not necessarily mean that a person will have OsteoArthritis no matter what. In fact, many people live their entire lives without any symptoms of OA. If you begin to notice any symptoms of OsteoArthritis, such as stiffness or pain in your joints, call Arrowhead Health Centers to learn more about the program we have in place specifically for you. We’ve helped hundreds of patients find a way to alleviate their joint pain and lead an active lifestyle. Call 623-334-4000 extension 9 today to learn more.