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Arthritis

Sunstate Medical Associates

Internal Medicine Physicians located in Lake Mary, FL

The chronic joint pain caused by arthritis can limit your activities. If you’re looking for a better method of managing arthritis, the board-certified physicians at Sunstate Medical Associates in Lake Mary, Florida, can help. They provide effective therapies and support your healthy lifestyle changes, making every day more comfortable. Find out how you can benefit from the expertise of the Sunstate Medical Associates team by calling their office today or book an appointment using the online form.

Arthritis Q & A

What is arthritis?

Arthritis is a widespread problem that causes chronic joint pain and stiffness. There are numerous types of arthritis, some of which are rare, while others affect millions of people every year, all over the United States.

Osteoarthritis is the type of arthritis you’re most likely to get. It usually affects your joints around the age of 50 and worsens over time. Osteoarthritis is typically the result of years of wear-and-tear on your joints. It may set in earlier if you’ve injured your joints or put them under a great deal of stress.

Osteoarthritis develops as the coating of slippery cartilage on the ends of your bones wears away. Without cartilage to help them slide, the bones that make up your joints start to rub together, creating friction.

The friction leads to inflammation, which causes pain that makes your joints throb, swell, and stiffen.


What other types of arthritis are there?

Of the 100 or so types of arthritis, the one that affects most people (except for osteoarthritis) is rheumatoid arthritis (RA). RA tends to affect younger people, as it has an entirely different cause.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder, which means your body destroys the membranes in your joints, mistakenly treating the cells as though they were harmful invaders. This damages the joint’s surfaces and causes the typical arthritis symptoms of pain, swelling, and stiffness.

Gout is a form of arthritis that develops when uric acid crystals build up in the joints. It typically affects your feet and toes and can cause agonizing bouts of pain. Other forms of arthritis develop because of underlying diseases, like lupus, psoriasis, or infection.


How is arthritis treated?

There’s no cure as yet for arthritis in any of its forms. Therefore, the Sunstate Medical Associates team’s aim in treating arthritis is to reduce the pain and inflammation, improve your mobility, and prevent the condition from worsening.

One of the most important ways of treating any form of arthritis is to make changes in your lifestyle to promote good health. For example:

  • Losing weight
  • Eating healthy foods
  • Exercising regularly
  • Quitting smoking
  • Reducing alcohol intake
  • Managing stress
  • Staying hydrated

The Sunstate Medical Associates team can help you with all these changes, providing information and support and monitoring your health.

If you need medication for arthritis, anti-inflammatories can help. Over-the-counter medicines like ibuprofen can relieve milder pain, but you might need steroid injections for more severe pain. You might also benefit from hyaluronic acid (HA) injections to lubricate your joints.

There are also more specialized medications for certain forms of arthritis. For example, if you have rheumatoid arthritis, drugs called DMARDs (disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs) can be helpful.

Find out more about managing arthritis by calling Sunstate Medical Associates today or book an appointment online.