When we hear the term arthritis, we immediately think of bone or joint pain. What is arthritis? Is there a difference between osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis? Many people have arthritic conditions. Some are having joint problems and wonder if they might be getting arthritis.
Osteoarthritis (OA) occurs when the cartilage is exposed to the bloodstream. It is not recognized by our immune system and is attacked. This can be from an accident when a bone or joint is broken or strained. Or it can happen from gradual wear out over time.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease. Our same immune system attacks joint tissue thinking it is an intruder. It is a malfunction of the immune system. There are over 100 autoimmune diseases.
RA Early Signs
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/319810. The two most common early signs of RA are pain and stiffness in the joints, usually the hands, wrists, and feet. More than one joint on the same side of the body might be a good indicator that RA is responsible.
Other than an occasional light pain or stiff joints, a person might feel tired and fatigued a lot. This affects their entire life from domestic choices, business productivity, relationships, and even sex drive. RA is an inflammatory condition, and a slight fever might be detected.
The increase in body temperature coupled with fatigue may make people think something else is responsible. Increased body inflammation may also result in unexpected weight loss. Fatigue is a cause of eating less.
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/rheumatoid-arthritis/symptoms-causes/syc-20353648. An occasional pain or stiff joint in the fingers might be an early warning sign. Couple that stiffness with joint tenderness. You might surmise that you are experiencing early RA symptoms, especially when the tenderness involves the connective area of the fingers to the hand or the toes to the foot. More pain is experienced when you getting out of bed in the mornings.
The next thing that is usually seen is swelling around the joints. Early swelling is minimal to nonexistent some days. As RA progresses, swelling becomes a daily problem. Swelling is often accompanied by redness and heat around the joint’s tender parts caused by internal inflammation. These symptoms are part of the body’s normal response to a foreign body. However, in this case, the foreign body is not a stranger.
Some people also experience numbness or tingling around and inside the hands and feet. Swelling caused by inflammation compresses the nerves and results in loss of feeling. A consequence of the swelling also decreases the range of motion. Swelling is partly to blame, but as the joints’ damage occurs, the ligaments and tendons are affected and not as flexible.
Not everyone has the same joints on both sides of their body affected by RA. However, many do experience similar symptoms on both hands and feet. Symmetry is not required to have RA. The symptoms from RA can come and go. There may be times without any joint problems, and then something causes a flare-up, and pain, stiffness, and swelling return overnight.
Cure and Complications
https://www.arthritis.org/diseases/rheumatoid-arthritis. Doctors tell us that there is no cure, and it is always best to begin RA treatment early. Knowing the symptoms can help you decide to see your doctor and tell him or her about your suspicions. Serious problems can develop when RA is left untreated.
Rheumatoid nodules or lumps, joint deformities, carpal tunnel syndrome, and increased risk of inflammation affecting other parts of the body, especially your cardiovascular system, are complications associated with RA.
https://www.arthritis-health.com/types/rheumatoid/risk-factors-rheumatoid-arthritis-ra. Autoimmune system disorders are one of those worlds where the medical industry needs to learn more. From various studies over the past decade, scientists determined that women have a higher risk than men. One is twelve women, and one is twenty men develop RA. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3078757/)
Smoking appears to be a smoking gun that causes autoimmune system disruptions. The risk of developing RA and the quicker progression of the disease has been confirmed by https://arthritis-research.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/ar2751.
Weight can play a significant part in the development of RA according to https://arthritis-research.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13075-016-1171-2. Obesity greatly increases the risk of RA.
Studies also confirmed that moderate consumption of alcohol can decrease the risk of RA (https://www.bmj.com/content/345/bmj.e4230). Likewise, a decrease in RA is experienced when women are breastfeeding (https://academic.oup.com/rheumatology/article/53/5/860/1798220).
I have read several articles over the years about Type II undenatured chicken (T2UC) collagen treating both OA and RA. It is something to talk to your doctor about. http://blog.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/collagen-supplements-helpful-arthritis/. Testimonial data is not to be taken to the bank, but I recommended T2UC to a friend with wear-out problems in his knee joints. Three months later he was playing basketball with his teenage sons and had no pain in his knees that plagued him for years.
The link above is one of many about T2UC and arthritis. Success has been achieved with both RA and OA, but not guaranteed.
Live Longer & Enjoy Life! – Red O’Laughlin – RedOLaughlin.com