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Can An Osteopath Help Relieve The Pain Of Osteoarthritis?

Wear and tear on a person’s joints is incredibly common, especially in those over the age of 45, and while this usually means that they have osteoarthritis (commonly referred to as simply ‘arthritis,’) it is a normal process associated with ageing, and nothing to be overly alarmed about. That said, even a person who has had an x-ray or scan indicating that the level of joint degeneration is minimal, may still experience high levels of pain. 

Oftentimes, a person with mild changes of a degenerative nature in their spine, may experience a lot of pain in their lower back, while a person with moderate levels of degeneration, won’t suffer nearly as much. But, whatever your level of pain and discomfort, registered and qualified osteopaths can help to alleviate it.

What is osteoarthritis?

Globally, osteoarthritis causes pain and disability in millions of adults, and is one of the leading causes of pain among a certain age group. It can also affect people who are younger and who may have suffered previous injuries or who have another condition affecting their joints. 

A degenerative condition of the joints, osteoarthritis typically affects the hip and knee joints the worst, but hands, wrists, spines, feet and ankles can also be affected. Causing the smooth cartilage that lines the joints to become worn, when this happens, friction takes place and movement is made more uncomfortable and difficult. Over time, this leads to pain and stiffness, not to mention inflammation, and as the cartilage continues to erode, bony spurs known as osteophytes develop and symptoms of further exacerbation. 

How can therapy such as osteopathy help sufferers of osteoarthritis?

Manual therapies such as osteopathy have been proven to help relieve pain in people suffering with osteoarthritis, and in addition to that, to help them improve upon their flexibility and overall quality of life, too. By releasing the tension in the muscles surrounding the affected joint, a person’s range of movement can be improved along with an overall improvement in joint health, thanks to the promotion of blood and lymph flow going to and from the affected area. 

Additionally, an osteopath will try to optimise how related parts of the body function, making sure that both movement and loading are evenly distributed. Using a range of techniques to help them achieve this, such as massage, joint mobilisation, gentle articulation, and stretch, osteopaths will take into account the circumstances and wishes of each individual patient before administering treatment.  

Are osteopaths able to help relive pain in any joint?

The most debilitating form of osteoarthritis often takes place in the hips and knees, but since the same degenerative process occurs in arthritis, any affected joint may be treated by Osteopathy in Woking using the same techniques, such as wrists, necks, spines, big toes and thumbs. 

So, while you may think that only surgery can help alleviate your suffering from osteoarthritis, when even the NHS recommends manual therapy such as manipulation and stretching coupled with losing weight and pain medication, it makes a trip to see your local osteopath, something you should definitely consider doing. 

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