Arthritis affects only the wrist, ankle and knee joints.
Arthritis can affect any joint in the body.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) affects men twice as often as women.
RA is an autoimmune disease. It affects women two to three times as often as men. Although RA most commonly begins when a person is in his or her 30s or 40s, the disease can strike at any age. No one knows why RA is more common among women. It's possible the female hormone estrogen may play a role in disease development.
If you develop arthritis, you should not exercise, because it will further damage joints.
Exercise, such as a daily walk or swim, helps keep joints moving, reduces pain, and strengthens muscles around the joints. Rest is also important for the joints affected by arthritis. Physical therapists can develop personal programs that balance exercise and rest. Exercise also helps keep weight under control, which reduces stress on the joints.
To schedule an appointment with a Christian Hospital orthopedic specialist, call 314.747.WELL(9355).