May is National Arthritis Awareness Month. More than 50 million Americans suffer from arthritis. Did you know that there are several dozen different types of arthritis?
Here are some more common, but surprising, facts about arthritis:
- There are more than 100 types of arthritis, including rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis, which are the most common arthritic conditions.
- About one in 5 Americans suffers from some type of arthritis.
- Arthritis is not merely a disease for older individuals. In fact, more than 60% of American adults who currently suffer from arthritis are working -age adults in the 18 -64 years age group.
- Arthritis is an expensive condition to treat. Americans spend more than 150 billion dollars every year managing the symptoms of what is essentially an incurable disease. Treatment typically consists of managing the disabling and painful symptoms of the condition.
- Anyone can develop symptoms of arthritis, but the obese may be especially vulnerable. About 1/3rd of obese adults in the United States also suffer from arthritis.
Part of a typical treatment plan for arthritis will involve a weight maintenance program that will encourage the individual to maintain an optimum healthy weight as well as perform low impact exercise activities.
An arthritis patient should seek medical help from a rheumatologist, a specialist who treats arthritis. A rheumatologist should be able to guide a patient towards a proper symptom management program that will help provide relief from the pain and stiffness.