Did you know that one in every five people suffer from arthritis in their joint and bones? Arthritis usually develops over a couple of years, with symptoms such as stiffness, tenderness, pain, and limited range of motion. Even though a lot of people develop arthritis, there are a number of myths and misconceptions about bone and joint pain. Here are some of the debunked myths and actual facts:
Myth: Cracking your knuckles can cause arthritis.
Fact: We have all heard this before, cracking your knuckles will cause arthritis. But the reality is you are just releasing the nitrogen gas that dissolved in your blood. This habit, though annoying to some, will not cause arthritis. There is no link or correlation between cracking your knuckles and arthritis.
Myth: All joint pain is arthritis.
Fact: There are many varieties of arthritis, but if your joint or bones are achy or swollen, it does not necessarily mean arthritis. There are other conditions such as tendonitis, bursitis, even celiac disease that cause joint pain. If you do experience any of these symptoms, schedule an appointment with your doctor for treatment.
Myth: Arthritis only happens to old people.
Fact: Arthritis can happen to anyone from the age of 2 to the age of 80. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has studies that show two-thirds of people with arthritis are younger than 65. Another study shows that 1 in 250 kids have arthritis,and so it can happen at any age.
Myth: Exercise will make arthritis pain worse.
Fact: Regular exercise will actually help your bone and joint pain, as long as it is done correctly. Keeping your strength up, and your range of motion is important in battling the pain. If the pain is unbearable, try some light stretching or workouts like swimming that are less pressure on your joints. The more you exercise, the more your range of motion gets better, so it is actually important to do some light to moderate exercises.
Myth: There is nothing you can do to alleviate the pain.
Fact: There are actually many things you can do to alleviate the pain of arthritis. Keeping a healthy weight will keep less pressure on your joints and reduce pain. There are medications you can take such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids, and doctor prescribed medication/cream to help prevent pain and damage. You can apply heat during the day to relax muscles and stiffness, while applying ice at night to east inflammation.