Inflammation of a joint, better known as arthritis, can be a very mild or a very severe process. This process typically occurs after prolonged stress on a joint, or subsequent to joint strain, as in athletics or heavy work. Many times this inflammation is self correcting. Sometimes it isn’t, and requires further care for pain alleviation, and reestablishment of joint capacity.
Attempting to ascertain the cause of arthritis is important to help in the initiation of a proper curative therapy. Pain alleviation and diminishment of joint inflammation (in a combined fashion), is a reasonable and responsible approach toward overcoming arthritis. But sometimes, reducing the pain with only analgesics, without trying to simultaneously correct the cause, can lead to further problems down the line. Some types of arthritis are even labeled as incurable, but we should at least make an attempt to manage the problem and its inherent pain, in order to slow down it’s potentially debilitating progression.
Many times, what is thought to be arthritis turns out to be poor joint support instead, and thus improper dynamics of joint movement. Bio-mechanical therapy can help in restabilizing muscular joint strength and movement. Muscle testing, joint motion ability, and sometimes x-rays all help to evaluate joint structure, strength and support. Metabolic and pathologic aspects of arthritis can be looked into with laboratory blood work evaluation.
There are many types of arthritis, but most cases fall into the following three categories: osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and gouty arthritis. We will address these types of arthritis in more detail in the next article, Arthritis Pain – Part II.
(Dr. Richard Hanson, chiropractor in Jamestown, New York, can be reached at (716)664-0445. Most major insurances are now being accepted.)