About Degenerative Joint Changes
You Have Options for Pain Relief and RecoveryOur bones and joints are the parts of our bodies that form our framework and support structure. Naturally, we want to keep them in the best condition possible. Diet and exercise can go a long way toward keeping our joints in top condition, but age and other factors can gradually wear down these crucial parts that hold us together. Fortunately, the staff at miVIP are experienced in treating a variety of degenerative joint conditions, and can help to slow down, stop, and even reverse some of the damage caused by age-related and illness-related joint conditions.
Common Causes of Degenerative Joint ChangesDegenerating joints can be triggered in a multitude of ways, from poor diet, lack of exercise, age, illness, and heredity. People who don’t get enough exercise and eat the proper foods prevent regenerating the building blocks needed to keep bones and joints healthy. But even those who take good care of themselves can be affected by joint changes, especially as they age. Osteoarthritis is one of the most common causes of joint problems. Whether it affects the spine, feet, knees, or other areas of the body, osteoarthritis can have painful and debilitating effects.
Degenerative Joint Change SymptomsSymptoms from osteoarthritis can manifest itself in a variety of ways:
- Gradual or sudden onset of pain
- Swollen, stiff joints that are difficult to bend or straighten
- Pain and swelling that’s worse in the morning or after inactivity
- Pain that can increase after walking, kneeling, or climbing stairs
- A feeling of weakness in the affected joints
- Pain or stiffness with changes in the weather and humidity
Treating Degenerative Joint ConditionsFortunately, many treatments exist today that are both effective and minimally-invasive. Often, doctors will prescribe anti-inflammatory medication and develop a physical therapy plan that will allow patients to build bone and muscle strength and regain some mobility. Gradually increasing low-impact exercise, such as walking, can help, as well as eating a variety of healthy foods rich in calcium and other vitamins. For overweight sufferers, losing weight can go a long way toward relieving joint pain.
Doctors may suggest special supportive shoes and arch support inserts for foot joint problems. For severe joint pain, steroid injections can be very effective. The following types of surgery can also treat severe degenerative joint problems:
- Fusion surgery – The bones are fused together with rods, screws, plates, or pins to strengthen their support.
- Joint replacement surgery – Affected joints are replaced with strong artificial implants.