When people talk about “arthritis,” they usually mean osteoarthritis. This is a wear-and-tear condition that is characterized by inflamed joints.
The primary symptoms of arthritis are pain, stiffness, and swelling around the affected joint. Arthritis can affect any joint in your body, but it most commonly (and most severely) affects the knees, hands, spine, and hips. If someone in your family suffers from this condition, you have an increased risk of developing it.
Preserving the health of your joints is important to living actively and independently. By learning what causes knee arthritis and taking preventive measures against it, you may be able to avoid it, delay its progression, or stop it from developing any further.
Some of the most common causes of arthritis in the knee are the following:
Repetitive Stress on the Knee
Sports and occupations that require you to put excess pressure on your knees, such as running, using stairs, and carrying heavy loads, can increase your risk of developing knee arthritis. Repetitive motions that involve the knees, such as squatting while gardening, can also cause knee arthritis.
The prolonged or heavy pressure on your knee joints causes the protective cartilage in the joints to wear down. Without cartilage, adjacent bones in a joint rub against each other, causing arthritic pain and inflammation.
This is also why arthritis is more common as we get older, because we perform various motions many times over the years. This can cause eventual wear-and-tear on the joints.
If you are overweight, you are at an increased risk of developing knee arthritis. The excess weight puts greater pressure on your knees, which can accelerate the wear-and-tear on the cartilage in your weight-bearing joints. Moreover, fat tissue has been discovered to release inflammatory proteins that can harm your joints. Therefore, arthritis treatment often includes weight reduction as part of the program.
History of Knee Injury
Arthritis that develops due to trauma to the knee joints is called post-traumatic knee arthritis. Damage to the knee bones, ligaments, tendons, cartilage, or other components of the joint increases your risk of developing knee arthritis later on, because the integrity of the joint is compromised.
If you engage in strenuous physical activity or play sports, see an orthopedist for advice on how to avoid developing arthritis when performing your activities. Osteoarthritis is oftentimes preventable.
Knee Arthritis Treatment and Prevention in Palm Beach
Don’t be one of the many people who accept joint pain as part of getting older or “a part of life.” If you suspect that you have knee arthritis, see an orthopedist who can properly diagnose and treat your condition, so you can live with much less pain.
Here at Personalized Orthopedics of the Palm Beaches, we offer comprehensive orthopedic care for patients with arthritis and sports injuries. Our team is composed of board-certified and fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeons, and our goal is to help you return to your active lifestyle as quickly and safely as possible.
To schedule an appointment, contact us at Personalized Orthopedics of the Palm Beaches today by calling us at (561) 733-5888, or request an appointment now by using our handy online form. We look forward to helping you feel great again!