Arthritis can completely change your life, making even simple movements difficult and painful. Fortunately, your doctors at Rios Healthcare Associates in Houston, TX, Drs. Tomas Rios and Nicolin Neal, offer treatments that will help relieve your pain and stiffness.
How arthritis affects you
Injuries and wear and tear destroy the cartilage at the ends of your bones if you have osteoarthritis. Without that protective layer of cartilage, the bones in your joints rub together painfully. Osteoarthritis can affect any joint but is most likely to occur in your hips, knees, spine, and hands.
Rheumatoid arthritis, another of the more than 100 forms of arthritis, happens when your immune system attacks the lining of your joints. Most people first notice rheumatoid arthritis symptoms in their toes or fingers. Eventually, the disease begins to affect the larger joints.
If you have arthritis, you may experience any of these symptoms:
- Pain in Your Joints: Pain may be worse first thing in the morning and decrease as you move more. The skin over the joint may be red or feel warm.
- Joint Changes: Your joints may be stiff, swollen, or look deformed if you have arthritis.
- Decreased Range of Motion: Stiffness and swelling caused by arthritis can decrease your range of motion, making it difficult to reach a glass on a high shelf or walk up the stairs easily.
- Trouble Holding Things: If you have arthritis in your hand or fingers, you may notice that your hand feels weak and that it's harder to grasp objects.
How is arthritis treated?
Over-the-counter pain medication, hot or cold packs and pain-relieving patches can dull the pain of arthritis. Regular exercise and a healthy diet will help you keep your joints moving freely and prevent weight gain, which may stress your joints.
If home treatment doesn't improve your pain, it's a good idea to pay a visit to Houston, TX, office. Depending on the type of arthritis and the severity of your symptoms, you may benefit from one or more of these treatments:
- Prescription pain medication
- Medication that reduces inflammation and prevents joint damage
- Steroid injections
- Physical and occupational therapy
Don't let arthritis pain keep you on the couch. Call Drs. Tomas Rios and Nicolin Neal of Rios Healthcare Associates in Houston, TX, at (832) 323-9230 to schedule your appointment.