If there is one Disease that can make you lose your grip on things you hold dear, it’s Arthritis.
OK, maybe that pun was in bad taste, but arthritis can literally make you lose grip on things. Characterized as a condition in which the joints become inflamed, swollen and stiff, arthritis can reduce mobility by making the movement of the affected joint painful and difficult for the patients– ranging from young children to senior citizens. And while arthritis can affect any joint in the body, the joints in the hand (wrists, fingers, and knuckles) are particularly prone to it, accounting for nearly 5% of all reported cases of arthritis. Not only that, arthritis in hand can be particularly problematic as well, presenting considerable limitations in the patient’s ability to grasp small objects, lift or carry even moderately heavy items – these are one set of joints that we use all the time, without even realizing it.Consult Orthopedic Doctor to get second opinion.
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Below are the common Arthritic Conditions that can affect Hands and Wrist:
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Juvenile arthritis
- Reactive arthritis
- Psoriatic arthritis
- Infectious arthritis
- Raynaud’s phenomenon
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Ganglion cysts
- Trigger finger
While different forms of arthritis can affect different joints, and affect them in different ways (e.g. while psoriatic arthritis causes pain in the distal joints, osteoarthritis causes cartilage to wear down in all the joints in the fingers), some symptoms are common across all forms of arthritis in hand. Typically, any form of arthritis will result in a wearing out or thinning of the cartilage, resulting in the bones rubbing together, leading to structural deformities in the affected body parts.
The Key Symptoms to Look Out for Include:
- Dull, persistent pain in joints
- Development of bony lumps on finger joints
- Numbness or reduced sensitivity in digits
- Swollen, red, or warm joints
- Stiffness in the fingers
- Difficulty gripping and twisting
- Changes in surrounding joints
- Warmth, cysts, and/or Crepitation looseness
Luckily, it is easy to measure the onset or degree of arthritis in hand by gauging loss of the bone density by bone-density scanning or assessing the damage to the joints by x-ray, and once the progression has been assessed, further deterioration can be prevented or correct medical intervention can be sought. This containment of deterioration can be easily actuated with certain dietary changes, and researchers have found what is known as a Mediterranean diet to be particularly effective in dealing with arthritis. The Mediterranean diet is typically rich in poultry, fish, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, olive oil, and nuts and seeds.
In addition, it is also advisable to:
- Replace saturated and trans fat in your diet with mono-saturated fats. Consider replacing your vegetable oil with olive oil and high-oleic safflower oil
- Increase your consumption of oily fish that contain fatty acids, which help in reducing the inflammation in joints.
- Increase your intake of iron-rich and calcium rich foods, such as eggs, green leafy vegetables, beans, red meat, and dairy products.
Not only can arthritis be a painful condition, it can also severely hamper the patient’s ability to function on a day-to-day basis.