Recognize the Early Signs of Arthritis and Common Symptoms You Should Never Ignore

Arthritis is a prevalent condition that affects millions of people worldwide, causing discomfort and impacting daily life. In the United States, arthritis is a leading cause of work disability, affecting over 53.2 million people, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It can happen for a number of reasons to adults at any age ― and the pain can be debilitating.

Recognizing the early signs and understanding common symptoms are crucial steps toward managing arthritis effectively. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the key indicators that may signal the onset of arthritis and explore the typical symptoms associated with this condition.

Early Signs of Arthritis

Joint Stiffness

One of the earliest signs of arthritis is stiffness in the joints, especially in the morning or after periods of inactivity. If you find it challenging to move certain joints or experience stiffness that improves with movement, it could be an early indicator.

Joint Pain

Persistent joint pain, often described as a dull ache or throbbing sensation, can be an early warning sign of arthritis. The pain may intensify with movement or activity and may be accompanied by swelling.

Reduced Range of Motion

Arthritis can lead to a decreased range of motion in affected joints. If you notice limitations in your ability to move a joint fully, it’s essential to pay attention and seek medical advice if the issue persists.

Joint Swelling

Swelling around the joints, accompanied by warmth and redness, can be an early indication of arthritis. This swelling may come and go, and it’s crucial to monitor changes in the appearance and feel of your joints. If your joint appears swollen, it could be as a result of excess synovial fluid ― a thick liquid that provides lubrication and cushioning.

Common Symptoms of Arthritis

Pain

Pain is a hallmark symptom of arthritis. It can range from mild to severe and may come and go. Understanding the type and intensity of pain can help in determining the specific type of arthritis.

Swelling

Inflammation leads to swelling in the joints. Swollen joints may feel tender to the touch, and the skin around them may appear red and warm.

Stiffness

Arthritis often causes stiffness, particularly in the morning or after prolonged periods of rest. Stiffness tends to improve with movement but may return after periods of inactivity.

Fatigue

Chronic pain and inflammation can contribute to fatigue, impacting daily energy levels and overall well-being.

Reduced Range of Motion

As arthritis progresses, the range of motion in affected joints may decrease, affecting your ability to perform daily activities.

Joint Deformities

In some cases, arthritis can lead to joint deformities, especially in advanced stages. Deformities may include changes in the shape and alignment of the affected joints.

When to Seek Medical Attention

If you experience persistent joint pain, stiffness, or notice any of the mentioned symptoms, it’s crucial to consult with a healthcare professional specialized in senior care to discuss treatment options to manage your symptoms and reduce pain. Reach out to us to schedule an appointment. Early diagnosis and intervention can significantly improve the management of arthritis and enhance your quality of life.

If your arthritis is a result of another condition like rheumatoid arthritis or gout, you may also notice other signs of the problem. For rheumatoid arthritis, that could be tenderness in multiple joints in your body, weight loss and fatigue. For gout, you may notice redness and swelling near your ankle or foot, in particular. For lupus, you might also experience muscle pain, light sensitivity, hair loss or fever. And for these reasons, we highly recommend booking an appointment with us and discussing treatment options with your physician.

Understanding the early signs and common symptoms of arthritis empowers you to take proactive steps toward better joint health. By being attentive to changes in your body and seeking timely medical advice, you can work with our senior care physicians to develop a personalized plan for managing arthritis and maintaining an active and fulfilling lifestyle.

We Want to Help You!

At Greenbrook Medical, we believe every senior citizen should be cared for and respected. That’s why we have made it our mission to provide the best possible care for our patients. Contact us today for a consultation or to request an appointment with one of our geriatric doctors!

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