Osteoarthritis is a very common condition which can affect any joint in the body. It’s most likely to affect the joints that bear most of our weight, such as the knees and feet. Joints that we use a lot in everyday life, such as the joints of the hand, are also commonly affected. In a healthy joint, a coating of tough but smooth and slippery tissue, called cartilage, covers the surface of the bones and helps the bones to move freely against each other. When a joint develops osteoarthritis, part of the cartilage thins and the surface becomes rougher. This means the joint doesn’t move as smoothly as it should.
Causes of Osteoarthritis
Though the exact causes of osteoarthritis are not known, factors that can increase your risk of osteoarthritis include:
Older age: The risk of osteoarthritis increases with age.
Sex: Women are more likely to develop osteoarthritis, though it isn’t clear why.
Obesity: Carrying extra body weight contributes to osteoarthritis in several ways, and the more you weigh, the greater your risk. Increased weight adds stress to weight-bearing joints, such as your hips and knees. Also, fat tissue produces proteins that can cause harmful inflammation in and around your joints.
Joint injuries: Injuries, such as those that occur when playing sports or from an accident, can increase the risk of osteoarthritis. Even injuries that occurred many years ago and seemingly healed can increase your risk of osteoarthritis.
Repeated stress on the joint: If your job or a sport you play places repetitive stress on a joint, that joint might eventually develop osteoarthritis.
Genetics: Some people inherit a tendency to develop osteoarthritis.
Bone deformities: Some people are born with malformed joints or defective cartilage.
Certain metabolic diseases: These include diabetes and a condition in which your body has too much iron
Ayurvedic treatment for osteoarthritis involves the pacification of the aggravated vata. At Krishnendu Ayurveda, we have a very systematic approach in treating osteoarthritis; we plan a customized treatment for each individual which is specific to their symptoms.
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