7 Risk Factors Tied to Developing Arthritis
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7 Risk Factors Tied to Developing Arthritis

Navigating life as a senior comes with its fair share of challenges. One of the most common age-related health issues is arthritis. This debilitating condition can significantly impact a senior's quality of life.

By staying aware and proactive, seniors can aim for early intervention and adopt strategies to minimize joint pain and improve their overall well-being. Here are the most common risk factors for arthritis: 

1. Age

As we grow older, our risk of developing arthritis increases. This is because the natural degeneration of joint cartilage occurs over time due to wear and tear. To maintain joint health and prevent arthritis, seniors should prioritize staying active and engaging in regular low-impact physical activities, such as walking, swimming, or yoga.

2. Family History

Genetics plays a significant role in determining an individual's likelihood of developing arthritis. If it runs in your family, it's important to let your healthcare provider know. They can also help you develop a personalized plan to reduce your risk, including lifestyle changes and potential medical interventions.

3. Previous Injuries

Having a history of joint injuries, such as fractures or dislocations, can increase your risk of developing arthritis later in life. Ensuring that these injuries are properly healed and rehabilitated is crucial to minimizing the chances of arthritis developing in the affected joints. Additionally, adding stretching and strengthening exercises into your daily routine can help prevent future injuries.

4. Obesity

Carrying excess weight puts additional strain on your joints, which can increase your risk of developing arthritis. Maintaining a healthy weight is essential for joint health and overall well-being. Seniors should also work with their healthcare providers or a nutritionist to develop a weight loss plan that includes a balanced diet and regular exercise.

5. Gender

Women are at a higher risk of developing arthritis compared to men, due in part to hormonal factors and loss of bone density. Women need to be proactive in their joint health by scheduling regular check-ups with their healthcare providers and implementing preventive measures. These include maintaining a healthy weight and engaging in low-impact exercises.

6. Infection

Certain infections can increase your risk of developing arthritis, as they can cause inflammation in the joints. Early detection and treatment of such infections are critical in preventing them. To avoid infections, seniors should practice proper hygiene. They also need to stay up-to-date on vaccinations and seek medical attention if they suspect they have an infection.

7. Occupation

Jobs that involve repetitive stress on joints, such as manual labor or prolonged standing, can increase the risk of arthritis. If you work in a field with high joint stress, it's essential to practice proper ergonomics and take breaks to reduce strain on your joints. For those at a high risk of developing arthritis, consider discussing potential accommodations with your employer or exploring alternative career paths.

Fight Arthritis With the Help of Senior Helpers South Shore, MA

Sometimes we need a little help and inspiration to cook nutritious meals, keep up with our exercise routines, and set (and celebrate!) goals. For those in Brockton, Marshfield, Bridgewater, Quincy, Braintree, and Randolph, Senior Helpers South Shore, MA is here to support you on your journey to maintaining healthy joints and living an active, fulfilling life. Contact Senior Helpers South Shore, MA today to learn more about our in-home caretaking services, and how they can help you live your best life.