Arthritis is a common immune disorder that affects your joints. It is characterized by pain and inflammation, making it very difficult to stay active and move around. There are more than 100 types of arthritis, each with different symptoms and may need different types of treatment. Arthritis often affects adults, but it can develop in children as well.
It is most common in different joints in the body: They include:
- Lower back
Here is a look at the different types of arthritis:
Osteoarthritis occurs due to the wear and tear of your joints. It often happens due to old age, and it can also come from obesity which puts extra stress on the joints, or from joint injuries. It often affects joints that bear the weight in the body, including feet, hips, knees, and spines,
The condition often occurs gradually over the years. Your body loses its cartilage which is the part that covers the end of the bone. For instance, it happens to your knees when you are overweight. The extra weight puts pressure on the cartilage as it is squeezed between the bones and gets damaged without much cushion in the joint.
Damaged cartilage moves painfully and is characterized by a grating sound thanks to the roughened surface when the bones rub together. You may get painful bumps ad spurs at the end of the bones, especially with feet and fingers.
Also referred to as RH, Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that attacks the body along the joints. It often leads to inflammation which can cause severe damage to the body if left untreated. Lumps on the skin, often called rheumatoid nodules, form when joint areas receive pressure on the elbows, knuckles, or heels.
RH is more severe than osteoarthritis, characterized by stiffness, pain, and swelling in your wrists, hands, elbows, knees, jaw, shoulders, and neck. It occurs in a symmetrical pattern, meaning when the knuckles on your left hand are swollen, the knuckles on your right hand will also be swollen.
It is also characterized by morning stiffness that can last for a few hours and is some people for most of the day. Additionally, some patients feel fatigued and notice their appetite decline and lose weight.
People with psoriatic arthritis have inflammation of the joints and the skin (psoriasis). Psoriasis is characterized by patchy red and white skin areas and often affects the tips of the knees and elbows, the navel, the scalp, and the skin around the anus and the genital areas.
This type of arthritis often starts from the age of 30 to 50 but in some people, it can start as early in their childhood and is equally common in men and women. Swollen fingers and toes characterize it, and some people may have pitted fingernails or, in some cases, discolored.
Gout s the build-up of uric acid crystals in the joints. In most cases, it occurs in the big toe or another part of your foot. It is characterized by a sharp pain in your big foot after a night of drinking. However, stress, drugs, and other illness can also trigger an attack.
A gout attack lasts between 3 to 10 days, even when left untreated. You may go for months and some years before you have another attack. If the condition is left untreated, it can also affect your kidneys and joints.
Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE)
Commonly referred to as lupus, SLE can affect different joints and organs in your body. It is an autoimmune disease that causes inflammation in your organs, joints, and brain. It is more likely to attack women in their childbearing age than men, is more common in African-American women, and usually appears between the ages of 15 and 44.
It is characterized by swollen joints, headaches, fatigue, swelling in the legs and hands, mouth sores, hair loss, and sun sensitivity. Patients also experience blood disorders like low levels of platelets and white blood cells and anemia.