Common myths about Osteoarthritis (OA)
Updated: Dec 13, 2021
Contributed by Tara Pandiscia, PT, DPT
MYTH #1: Osteoarthritis is a progressive, degenerative disease and the only cure is a joint replacement.
REALITY: Many people with OA will never need a joint replacement! It can be possible to manage your pain and continue to participate in the activities that you enjoy without surgery, even with “bone on bone” arthritis. While a joint replacement may ultimately be the right choice for some people, lifestyle changes including an anti-inflammatory diet, regular exercise, stress management, and weight loss are effective interventions that can help you manage arthritis pain without surgery.
MYTH #2: Osteoarthritis pain is caused by wear and tear or old age.
REALITY: Recent research has shown that Osteoarthritis is an inflammatory condition that is exacerbated by chronic, low-grade inflammation. This is good news because it means that we likely can control both the pain and the progression of OA by making anti-inflammatory lifestyle changes such as diet changes, improved sleep habits, stress management, and regular exercise.
MYTH#3: Exercise will make arthritis pain and degeneration worse.
REALITY: Research shows that our cartilage needs regular loading to stay healthy - just like everything else in our body, use it or lose it! Spending most of the time sitting/resting or having a sedentary lifestyle actually causes more cartilage breakdown while regular, moderate loading (exercise) helps maintain our cartilage health and prevent further degeneration by improving blood flow and reducing inflammation. A well-rounded exercise program including resistance training, cardiovascular exercise, and balance training will set you up for success.
Get in Touch!
If you are living with arthritis pain, there is hope! Book a PT evaluation at Restorative Therapy Co. and let our Virginia Beach physical therapists help you not just survive but THRIVE despite osteoarthritis! For appointments call 757-578-2958 or visitwww.restorativetherapyco.com