During Varsha ritu, air pressure decreases – increasing the chances of joints to expand. And the naturally aggravated vata in the body can cause dryness in joints. Osteoarthritis is the most commonly diagnosed form of arthritis today, affecting millions of people worldwide. 

Let us understand what is condition is and how it can be treated.

Osteoarthritis develops when the cartilage deteriorates. Over time the space between the bones narrows and the surface of the bone changes shape, leading eventually to friction and joint damage.

Osteoarthritis often affects more than one joint. For example, osteoarthritis is very common in the hip, knee, lower back, neck, feet, and certain finger joints, but very rare in the elbow.

Roughly equal number of men and women are affected by osteoarthritis, but it tends to affect them differently. Before the age of 40, more men have it , while from the age of 40 to 70 , osteoarthritis is more common in women.

You may have osteoarthritis if –

  • Your knees, hands, hips or back are often sore 
  • Bending, kneeling stair climbing are difficult
  • You have trouble opening jars, grasping objects
  • Joints are stiff and painful at the end of the day
  • There is slight swelling and enlargement of joints
  • Joints may not move as far or as freely as before
  • There is discomfort in a joint before or during a change in the weather


Primary causes of osteoarthritis

  1. Age- with use, joints begin to deteriorate and the cartilage wears away
  2. Menopausal- women at this stage of life have lower estrogen levels, predisposing them to osteoarthritis
  3. Genetic factor- accounts for at least 50% of cases of osteoarthritis of the hands and hip
  4. Lack of exercise
  5. Joint injury- athletic injury, sprain, strain to ligaments and tendons puts more stress on the joint


The knee

Most commonly affected joint. Overloading the joint can cause cartilage breakdown and failure of ligament. The most common causes of osteoarthritis at the knee include-

  1. Obesity
  2. Genetic tendency
  3. Joint overuse or injury

The goals of osteoarthritis management are to control pain, minimise disability, provide education to the patient and teach prevention and treatment methods.

When your joints are sore, rest the painful joints, use an ice pack on the area to reduce inflammation.

Osteoarthritis can affect the mind and emotions as much as the joints and the body.

Physiotherapy can help the patient improve joint function. Physical therapy helps people reduce pain and restore and maintain mobility, with an exercise program. For a person with osteoarthritis, a physical therapist will design a specially tailored exercise program that builds muscle to support affected joints and help maintain flexibility. The program may also include ultrasound, heat and cold therapies, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. a physical therapist will educate you about abnormal posture and body mechanics, and may suggest assistive devices to help protect your joints.