Many people have been diagnosed with arthritis. Some of those people have symptoms related to stiffness, pain, tightness or lack of movement related to arthritis. Unfortunately, arthritis-related symptoms can sometimes affect a person’s quality of life and daily activity.

What Exactly is Arthritis?

Arthritis is a term often used to mean any disorder that affects the “joints” of our body. Our joints are considered to be where two bones come together. There are many different types of arthritis. The most common is osteoarthritis. Another term for this is “degenerative joint disease.” Although osteoarthritis can affect many different regions of the body, some of the more common areas are the fingers, knees, hips and spine.

Arthritis is thought to have a hereditary component to it. It is also thought to be a component related to our lifestyle and factors that are in our control. There may be ways to reduce the likelihood that a person develops symptoms related to the arthritis. Even some preventative approaches to decrease or slow the progression. Some of these items are exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, proper nutrition and a healthy diet. Other items are decreased inflammation, gentle movement and stretching, and strength training. Also, decreasing repetitive strain or overuse of certain joints is beneficial.

How Do You Treat Arthritis?

There is no “cure” for arthritis at this time. However, there are many treatments for the symptoms related to it. Massage therapy is a great treatment to help alleviate pain, stiffness, soreness, and improve range of motion and flexibility. Massage therapy can also help decrease inflammation and improve lymphatic flow in the body.

Massage Therapy Benefits

Depending on the clients needs, there are certain types of massage therapy techniques that can be used to reach these benefits. If the person is experiencing pain and inflammation, a gentler technique like Swedish massage or Lymph Massage may be a good choice. If the person has stiffness or lack of range of motion, a deeper type of massage may be a better choice. This could be a sports massage or deep tissue massage. Exercise and gentle movement or stretching can also be effective treatments. It can be in conjunction with massage therapy or on it’s own as well.

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