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What is and how to prevent osteoarthritis

Physical activity is suitable for everyone, and staying active is essential to managing Osteoarthritis. Exercising and being active can help to prevent and treat many chronic diseases, like Osteoarthritis.

Osteoarthritis is wear and tear of the joint. Usually, joints are covered by cartilage, an elastic cushion that helps to protect against friction and facilitate movement. Yet, our joints can get diseased and worn out, and Osteoarthritis is the most common cause.

It is expected due to age-related wear and tear of the cartilage in older people. But an injury or surgery of the joints may also lead to Osteoarthritis over time.

And for all the office workers out there, it is essential to know that there are high chances that Osteoarthritis develops in inactive joints, too. So keep watching to find out more about how to prevent this from happening.

So the question is, why is exercise important in treating and preventing the onset of Osteoarthritis?

You see, Osteoarthritis primarily affects your hands, knees, hips and spine, especially the lower back and neck.

People with Osteoarthritis may experience:

  • Regular tenderness and pain in multiple joints

  • Stiffness in joints, and

  • Muscle weakness surrounding the joints

BUT When you exercise, the cartilage in the joint is loaded, which will help increase the stimulation of the development of cartilage, which in turn, helps with shock absorption in the joint.

Exercise will also:

  • Improve joint range of motion

  • Improve stability and joint function

  • Improve joint confidence

  • Help you move better

But words of advice, being inactive or excessively loading your joints with prolonged and hard manual labour and some sports- can cause an imbalance between the development and degradation of cartilage in the joint. Having strong muscles helps stabilise the joints and improve your confidence to complete activities. Using the right muscles at the right time with appropriate force makes it easier to control your movements and complete functional tasks. But it is essential to give your body time to recover and rebuild between exercise sessions.

And like any treatment, exercise needs to be adequately dosed. Exercising 3 to 4 times per week is likely more effective than exercising 2 x per week. And for you who cannot exercise, do not worry. 10 min of walking per day is 70 min a week; that's more than 60 hours a year. So, regular walking will have you covered.

But remember being active doesn't just help Osteoarthritis. It helps prevent more than 35 other chronic diseases, including depression, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

So why we share this with you is because moving and living better matters.


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