Osteoarthritis is a slowly progressive condition that usually presents after the age of 50 years and produces uncontrollable symptoms after the age of 65 -70 years. Age is the most common and non-modifiable factor in the causation of osteoarthritis. But other modifiable factors can be controlled to prevent osteoarthritis from reaching its full potential. The most common modifiable factor is abnormal weight gain and is very important in increasing the stress on the weight-bearing joints. It can produce the symptoms at an early age because of the rapid progression of the condition.(1)
What Are The Ways To Prevent Osteoarthritis?
Osteoarthritis can be controlled by maintaining the weight and losing the excess weight according to the body mass index. It will not only slow down the progression but also can reduce the chances of an individual to suffer from this condition. Stressful sporting activities for prolonged durations are also one of the factors but on the other hand, regular exercise is a fairly protective way for the prevention of osteoarthritis. Morning walk and running along with stretching exercises will prevent the setting in of the osteoarthritic factors and even help in reversing the effects of aging.(2)
According to various studies, it has also been postulated that osteoarthritis is also an inflammatory condition because of the damage occurring at articular cartilage of the joint. It can also be prevented by the use of natural and artificial antioxidants which helps in reducing the effects of inflammation. Fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E is the most beneficial in reducing the chances of inflammatory changes which in turn will prevent osteoarthritis.(3)
Eating a balanced diet is very beneficial in preventing a lot of diseases including osteoarthritis because it contains all the macro and micronutrients in balanced form and does not increase the levels of a certain component. Like if there is a rise in levels of protein consumption, it will ultimately lead to the formation of uric acid which will damage the joints especially knee joint. Such conditions can be prevented by the use of a balanced diet.(4)
Does Osteoarthritis Reoccur?
If all the steps are given in the above information and as recommended by your doctor are followed, there is a good chance that you may prevent osteoarthritis even in old age. But if the risk factors are continued to be uncontrolled or reinstated after a well-controlled period, it may also lead to a relapse of the condition. The changes which have undergone regression may resurface hence leading to recurrence of the osteoarthritis. Various new events may also lead to reactance and worsening of the condition such as trauma, infections, new stressful activities, involvement in combative sports, etc. are a few of the factors which may flare up the old condition of osteoarthritis. It can also lead to the chances of premature presentation of the symptoms below the age of 50 years.(5)
Osteoarthritis is such a condition which has both modifiable and non-modifiable type of risk factors. Although, the non-modifiable risk factors are permanent and cannot be changed modifiable risk factors can be controlled simply by following few steps regularly. It can lead to regression of the condition if already started and can prevent the condition from developing if not developed already. Weight reduction and regular exercise is the most common and easiest way out of this condition as it not only reduces the chances of development of osteoarthritis but also maintains the good health of the joints.
But if there is any unhealthy activity carried forward such as overeating or laziness, then it is very difficult to prevent the condition. It can cause osteoarthritis to recur or flare up the condition even further.
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