Arthritis – “Wear & Tear”
Degeneration of the joints in the body begins without your knowing – it happens to all of us. The general wear and tear of a lifetime results in joints laying down extra bone in an attempt to support a damaged area. In general, our bodies compensate for this and we feel little or no pain, but the slight loss of proper movement in a worn joint may cause nerve irritation and inflammation leading to pain.
Arthritis, spondylitis or rheumatics are names normally given to the pain and stiffness resulting from wear and tear to your joints. They can occur in any joint of your body, including your spinal vertebrae, but chiropractic treatment may often relieve the pain.
There are some types of arthritis – such as rheumatoid arthritis – that also involve periods of inflammation and destruction of the joints causing severe pain. Although chiropractors cannot treat the cause of this kind of arthritis, they may be able to help to relieve the disability that results from it once the inflammatory phase is over.
Other joint problems, caused by repeated trauma, that chiropractors treat include:
- shoulder pain
- tennis elbow
- golfer’s elbow
- knee pain
- repetitive strain injury (RSI)
Your chiropractor will carry out a full examination (which may include an X-ray referral) and take a thorough history before advising an appropriate treatment programme for you. Treatment consists of specific adjustments done by hand to free stiff joints and reduce spinal nerve irritation. He may also recommend ice, heat or massage treatment amongst other things. He will also support the treatment they offer with individual advice about the patient’s lifestyle, work and exercise, in order to help in managing the condition and preventing a recurrence of the problem.