Arthritis affects one in five adults, and with those odds, it’s no wonder the month of May is dedicated to arthritis awareness. The Arthritis Foundation says this disorder is the leading cause of disability among adults and is among the top five most costly disorders. One-third of working-age people with arthritis have limitations in their ability to work or the type of work they can do. The Arthritis Foundation is working towards better treatment options with cutting-edge research to help sufferers live pain-free and mobile lives (1).
Causes of arthritis
Arthritis is inflammation that occurs in the joints. Although arthritis is thought to occur in older people, this condition can affect people of any age. Almost 300,000 babies and children have been diagnosed, and it is more common in women than men. Although the most common form is osteoarthritis (OA), there are more than 100 types of this disorder including gout, fibromyalgia, and rheumatoid arthritis (1, 2, 3).
OA is caused by normal wear and tear that breaks down cartilage—a connective tissue in our joints. When a joint develops OA, some of the cartilage that covers the ends of the bones gradually roughens and becomes thin, and the bone underneath thickens. An infection or joint injury can increase your risk of arthritis, and a family history of this condition could increase your risk as well (1, 6).
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder that occurs when your body’s immune system attacks your tissues. RA is a disease of the synovium, a soft tissue that produces lubrication for your joints. Unfortunately, the cause of RA is unknown, but research suggests that bacteria or viruses, female hormones, obesity, and stress can all play a role in one’s risk (3,4).
The Arthritis Foundation also states that:
- 49 percent of adults with heart disease have arthritis.
- 47 percent of adults with diabetes have arthritis.
- 31 percent of adults who are obese have arthritis (1).
Symptoms of arthritis
Symptoms of osteoarthritis may include (1,3):
- Joint pain
- Decreased range of motion
- Warmness or redness of skin around joint
Rheumatoid arthritis symptoms may be worse and include:
- Loss of appetite
Treatment for arthritis
Treatment for arthritis depends on the severity of the condition, but it is important that this disorder is diagnosed and treated as early as possible—especially for RA sufferers. Traditional treatment options may include:
- Non-pharmacologic therapies
- Physical or occupational therapy
- Splints or joint assistive aids
- Weight loss
- Surgery, including joint replacement (1,2)
Pine Bark Extract
Experts have also found that non-traditional methods of treatment, including pine bark extract, have proven to be effective in easing arthritis symptoms. Pine bark extract significantly lowers the inflammatory marker C-reactive protein, a substance produced by the liver that increases inflammation, by 72 percent. A study found that patients who took 100 milligrams of pine bark extract for three months decreased their arthritis symptoms by 56 percent, and their use of painkillers decreased by 58 percent. Pine bark extract is a cheaper alternative to expensive medications and procedures, and can be found in our OPCXtra super antioxidant supplement (5,6).
If you or someone you know is suffering from arthritis, consider OPCXtra. This supply of powerful OPCs is made up of grape seed extract, red wine extract, pine bark extract and green tea extract which can help your body’s immune system respond to inflammation, allergy and infection. Click here to learn more, and get moving again!
May Is National Arthritis Awareness Month. (2015, May 07). Retrieved from http://blog.arthritis.org/news/arthritis-awareness-month/
Nichols, H. (2017, November 14). Arthritis: Causes, types, and treatments. Retrieved from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/7621.php
Arthritis: Causes, Signs, and Diagnosis. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health/arthritis#causes
Rheumatoid Arthritis Causes. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.arthritis.org/about-arthritis/types/rheumatoid-arthritis/causes.php
Hubbard, S. B. (2016, July 21). Pycnogenol: This Superfood Combats Diabetes, Heart Disease. Retrieved from https://www.newsmax.com/Health/Headline/Pycnogenol-pine-bark-extract/2016/07/21/id/739900/
Lerche, O. (2017, May 20). Natural cure for arthritis – adding THIS to your diet could ease painful symptoms. Retrieved from https://www.express.co.uk/life-style/health/806813/arthritis-symptoms-osteoarthritis-cure-natural-diet