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Monday, 28 July 2014 00:00

Arthritis

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Arthritis is a general term for conditions that include painful, swollen and/or stiff joints as primary symptoms. There are more than one hundred classifications of arthritis, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, arthritis due to infection or chemical agents, temporomandibular joint syndrome (TMJ), juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis and gout.

Osteoarthritis
Osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis, is classified as a degenerative (aka wear and tear) joint disease characterized by the deterioration of cartilage within the joints. While osteoarthritis can damage any joint in your body, the disorder most commonly affects joints in your hands, neck, lower back, knees and hips. Osteoarthritis symptoms often develop slowly and worsen over time. Signs and symptoms include: pain, tenderness, stiffness, loss of flexibility or range of motion, grating or grinding sensation and bone spurs

Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disorder that typically affects the joints in our hands and feet. Rheumatoid causes painful swelling in the lining of the joints that can eventually result in damage to the bone and joint deformity.

RA is considered an autoimmune disorder, which occurs when your immune system mistakenly attacks our own body tissues. In addition to causing joint problems, rheumatoid arthritis sometimes can also lead to inflammation in other organs of the body — such as the skin, eyes, lungs and blood vessels.

At Everspring Health, we start by learning about you and your relationship with arthritis. What is your pain like – is it sharp, dull, achey, constant, short-lived? Do you experience stiffness or swelling? Is it different in heat versus cold weather, or does it change with different seasons? We gather as much information as we can, so that we can develop a strategy to treat your unique symptoms and ideally dissolve the underlying cause.

Based on whether you are experiencing inflammation or a lack of circulation, we can use acupuncture and massage to either calm inflamed areas or to increase circulation. We fully examine lifestyle habits (stress, diet, and sleep); changing a pro-inflammatory diet, or increasing nutrition components that repair arthritic tissue, can reduce pain. We educate you on how joints work, and how to maintain them over time, as well as incorporate herbal therapy, functional medicine (vitamins/minerals), and current primary care to give you the best relief possible, while boosting your overall health and wellbeing.

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