6 Myths About Osteoarthritis
Osteoarthritis is one of the most common forms of arthritis, a term that now includes all joint diseases formerly known as rheumatism. Osteoarthritis refers to a particular mechanical form that affects the cartilage, the elastic tissue that protects the ends of bones and prevents them from rubbing against each other. Quite common, we often think we know the condition well. However, many of the information and beliefs circulating about osteoarthritis are either incorrect or incomplete. With this article, we wanted to rectify and clarify them.
Myth #1: Osteoarthritis results from normal wear and tear of the joints.
Although researchers have long believed that osteoarthritis is the result of normal wear and tear on cartilage, it is more likely related to the body’s inability to regenerate joint tissue. Indeed, these should normally renew naturally, but sometimes this process is disrupted. While the exact causes of this imbalance between cartilage destruction and regeneration are still poorly understood, certain factors may contribute to it. These include aging, undue pressure on the joints (during physical labour or intense sports), being overweight and some injuries. It should also be noted that women are more likely to suffer from it than men.
Myth #2: Osteoarthritis is caused by aging
Although age is one of the factors contributing to the disease, it is not a direct cause. While it mainly affects people over the age of 50, more and more people under this age are now being affected. The fact that this disease now affects younger people would be due, at least in part, to the rise in obesity and sedentary habits. This could explain why, while rare, young people in their twenties sometimes suffer from osteoarthritis.
Myth #3: Osteoarthritis is a generalized condition affecting the joints
Osteoarthritis is usually localized to a particular site: it can occur in a single joint. It mainly affects movable and/or weight-bearing joints such as the knees, hips and spine.
Myth #4: It is impossible to prevent osteoarthritis
While it is not always possible to avoid osteoarthritis, it can be prevented in many cases. To do this, we must control the risk factors of the disease that can be controlled. Maintaining a healthy weight is one of the most effective ways to do this; being overweight is known to put pressure on the joints, especially the knees and hips. It is also recommended to protect your joints during intense physical activities (physical labour, sports) to avoid joint injuries.
Myth #5: Physical activity increases the risk of osteoarthritis
Although the practice of certain high-intensity sports is a risk factor for the disease, moderate and adapted physical activity can help control it. Indeed, sports help to improve muscle and ligament tone, and thus joint mobility. Sports also help with weight control and reducing stress and anxiety, both of which can increase muscle and joint tension. However, choose a light physical activity that does not put undue pressure on the joints (cycling, swimming, walking, moderate running, etc.) and favour shorter but frequent periods of activity.
Myth #6: Nothing can be done about osteoarthritis
Although it is impossible to completely cure osteoarthritis, there are ways to control it and avoid its symptoms. As mentioned, moderate exercise and weight control can be beneficial to limit the progression of the disease. Medical or therapeutic treatments (physiotherapy, occupational therapy) can help to limit its effects. Prescription drugs and surgery (joint replacement) are sometimes called for, especially in the most severe cases.
Taking Genacol products is one of the ways to manage osteoarthritis and its effects. The Aminolock Collagen that they contain helps to stimulate collagen function in the joints, protect the cartilage against degradation and relieve joint pain. Its effectiveness is scientifically proven by three clinical studies. It is therefore a simple and natural way to live better with osteoarthritis!