What is the best treatment for Osteoarthritis?
Have you been told you have Osteoarthritis? This is the most common form of arthritis. You might be feeling a little worried about what this means for your future.
The good news is there’s some very simple and effective ways to manage Osteoarthritis. You can continue living a healthy, active life if you learn about your condition, and the best treatments for Osteoarthritis.
The best treatments for Osteoarthritis are:
- Weight control
The GLA:D Program is designed specifically for treatment of Hip and Knee Osteoarthritis. It has proven to be very effective at reducing pain, and improving quality of life. You can read more about the GLA:D Program here
While learning about the best treatments for Osteoarthritis is important, there are also many misconceptions about Osteoarthritis. This is where education about your condition is so important.
In your journey to learn more about Osteoarthritis, make sure you understand the following key points.
Common misunderstandings about Osteoarthritis
- Osteoarthritis is NOT a wear-and-tear condition! Loading the joint does not cause further damage.
- Only half of the people with visible osteoarthritis changes on x-ray actually have symptoms.
- Exercise is good for your joints and is protective against the development of osteoarthritis.
- Exercise and education are essential interventions for all people with osteoarthritis. They MUST be considered before medication or surgery.
- Not moving will actually make your joint pain worse. Exercise keeps your joints strong and healthy.
- Exercise reduces pain and improves function in people with osteoarthritis, regardless of disease stage or severity.
- Strength is KEY! Weak muscles around joints can lead to the development of osteoarthritis due to a higher chance of injury and altered loading.
- “Hurt does not equal harm”: an increase in pain during exercise does not mean you are damaging your joint. With time, your body will adjust and get used to the activity.
- Activity is helpful even for those with end-stage osteoarthritis awaiting a joint replacement.
- Osteoarthritis does not have to be a downward trajectory. You can stabilise your osteoarthritis, and even recover from it!
- Exercise is 2 to 3 times more effective than paracetamol in reducing pain in knee osteoarthritis.
- There is no association between moderate long distance running and the future development of osteoarthritis.
Physiotherapists play an important role in the management of Osteoarthritis. We provide education to help you understand your condition, and appropriate and graded exercise, to improve joint health and function. There are no magic bullets to overcome Osteoarthritis, but with the correct information, and regular, appropriate exercise, you have every chance of improving your symptoms.
If you’re seeking the best treatment for Osteoarthritis, we highly recommend investigating the GLA:D Program. We offer this program at Aspire Physiotherapy Glenelg, and would love to support you to feeling better, and being able to do things with less pain, and more confidence.