Did you know that arthritis is not one disease – but an umbrella term used for over 100 different conditions of the joint? May is Arthritis Awareness Month and at Step by Step Family Foot Care, we think it’s essential to pass on information about this disease which has engulfed millions of people around the globe.
The prevalence of arthritis in the United States has grown exponentially. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an estimated 54 million adults in the US have some form of arthritis, which is about 1 in 4. Even kids can get arthritis! Symptoms of arthritis may vary depending on the type. Still, some common characteristics include pain, stiffness, fatigue, inflammation, and swelling of the joints, loss of foot function, and mobility issues. The thirty-three joints in each foot are common targets of this disease.
There are no instant solutions for arthritis, but there are several steps you can take to mitigate its effects.
- Weight loss can reduce the stress and pressure on the joints of the foot and ankle. Make sure that you eat healthily and stay active. A good diet and regular exercise or sport can help you maintain a healthy body weight while relieving pain and stiffness in the joints.
- Customized orthotics can be very beneficial in redistributing pressure loads across the foot.
- Use medication and anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce pain and inflammation.
- Wear shoes that are not too tight around the toe area to minimize pressure points. Extra-padding in the shoes can be helpful.
- Physical therapy can help enhance your foot function and mobility issues.
- Joint surgery.
If you have arthritis symptoms or have any concerns about your foot health, contact Step By Step Family Foot Care. Our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Debra B. Manheim, can evaluate your symptoms and treat you promptly. You can call us at (973) 917-3785 to schedule a convenient appointment or visit our office in Parsippany, NJ.