Bone and joint conditions are the most common cause of serve long-term pain and physical disability worldwide affecting millions of people. Among ageing Indians, major problems that affect joints and bone health are arthritis, osteoporosis and back pain. Arthritis develops gradually over several years. Its main symptoms are redness and inflammation of joints. There are many forms of arthritis. The most common type of arthritis is, osteoarthritis – associated with wear and tear of cartilage.
Who is at risk?
- It can affect anyone regardless of their age, gender or race
- Women are affected more than men, they usually develop osteoarthritis after the age of 40. Major causes of these bone and joint related conditions are hereditary factors, infections (bacterial and viral) and lack of joint fluid. With age, the structure of bone changes and results in loss of bone tissue, that weakens bones changes and results in loss of bone tissue, that weakens bones and increases the risk of fractures from a sudden bump or fall
Age related changes in Bones and Joints:
- An inactive lifestyle causes bone wastage
- Menopause and hormonal changes in women trigger the loss of minerals in bone tissue. In men, the gradual decline in certain hormones leads to the later development of osteoporosis
- Bones lose calcium and other minerals with age
- Bones are cushioned by cartilage that lines the joints. The lubricating fluid inside the joint (synovial fluid) allows joints to move freely
- With age, joint movement becomes stiffer and less flexible because the lubricating fluid inside the joints decreases and the cartilage becomes thinner due to excessive wear and tear
Ligaments also shorten and lose flexibility, making joints feel stiff. Many of these age-related changes in bones and joints are caused by lack of exercise. Movement of the joint helps keep the fluid moving. Nutritional supplements also help to relieve symptoms of arthritis, osteoporosis and the pain associated with it. In addition to supplements intake of adequate milk, fruits and vegetables also promote healthy bone formation.
7 Tips to for healthy bones
- Recover during sleep: Your mattress should provide enough comfort and stability to rest your spine, not stress it.
- Work it out: Perform low impact exercises like yoga or swimming to strengthen the muscles around your joints.
- Stretch: Be sure you have enough room to move around. Hold stretches for 20-30 seconds.
- Get your vitamin C: Vitamin C is essential to help your body generate collagen that keeps cartilage strong. Try papayas, bell peppers.
- Invest in good shoes: Look for shoes with cushion or insert to distribute your weight evenly across your whole foot.
- Stop smoking: Tobacco restricts blood flow to the tissues around your spine.
- See your doctor: An orthopedic specialist will be able to work with you to create a better lifestyle and provide relief