Employee Wellness Programs Glossary Term:

Osteoarthritis is a condition in which the joints start degenerating or disintegrating. For this reason it is also called degenerative joint disease or degenerative arthritis. However, osteoarthritis is not a single disease. It is the end result of a number of disorders that lead to the wearing away of the joints. Osteoarthritis doesn't just involve the joints. It also involves the muscles, ligaments, cartilage and other things around the joint.

Prevent Osteoarthritis With A Corporate Wellness Program

Here are some of the causes of osteoarthritis:

  • People suffering from diabetes are prone to osteoarthritis. Other problems regarding the endocrine system, such as obesity can also cause osteoarthritis.
  • Any previous injury or damage to the joint may break the bone. If the bones grow back and line up improperly, it loses stability and damages the cartilage as well.
  • In some occupations, repetitive action over the years will lead to wearing of the joints, causing osteoarthritis.
  • Any inflammatory joint diseases like chronic gouty arthritis or rheumatoid disease.
  • Diseases like Wilson disease and Paget's disease will cause errors in the metabolism, resulting in osteoarthritis.
  • A difference in the length of two legs, for example, could cause osteoarthritis.
  • Genetic diseases can cause the disintegration of cartilage. For example, Ehlers- Danlos syndrome.
  • Nutrition problems are also responsible for osteoarthritis.

Some symptoms of osteoarthritis are:

  • Stiffness, aches and difficulty in joint movements. The pain would get worse by using the joints, and can even occur at night.
  • Specific joints like the fingers are affected. On the fingers, the bone enlarges at the finger-tip. They may not be painful initially, but can suddenly intensify causing excruciating pain, swelling and redness of the area. This is common among women who are 45 years and older.
  • Hips are prone to osteoarthritis among men, because of the heavy physical overload. The same is the case for knees, which bear most of the load along with the hip. Squatting and kneeling all the time can increase the chances of osteoarthritis.
  • Osteoarthritis in the spine can cause the back bone to misalign, causing pain and weakness in the arms and legs.
  • If common pain relief capsules are not giving any relief from the pain or if you are suddenly unable to move or find it difficult to move, it's better to see the doctor. Sudden inabilities to walk or bear weights are a sign for you to visit the nearest hospital. Osteoarthritis can affect young people as well, but they are more common among old people. Women are also more likely suffer from osteoarthritis especially after the age of 55.

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