The 14th – 21st May is Arthritis Care Week 2016 and the aim is to raise awareness of what it’s like to live with arthritis. This can be done by sharing your story and getting involved using the hashtag #ArthritisMatters
Around 10 million people in the UK have arthritis and you can have arthritis at any age. Currently there are around 12,000 children in the UK with arthritis and approximately 27,000 people under the age of 25. And a staggering one in five adults in the UK has arthritis!
Arthritis means inflammation of the joints, and there are over 200 types. Two of the most common types of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis. It’s more common in women and can happen at any age but it occurs more often in older people. Osteoarthritis causes joint pain and stiffness because of changes to the cartilage in joints, and it usually develops gradually over time. Different joints can be affected for different people but it’s most seen in the hands, knees, hips, feet and the spine.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes inflammation, mainly affecting joints and tendons. Like osteoarthritis it’s more common in women and can happen at any age, however it’s most common between the ages of 30 and 50 years and certain genes may trigger the development of rheumatoid arthritis. The disease usually starts in the wrists, hands or feet, and can then spread to other joints and other parts of the body.
Depending on the type and severity of your arthritis there are things that can help:
- Splints and supports
- Daily living aids
If you would like more information about arthritis and how to manage it you can visit https://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/ and there will be more posts from us later in the week.