Arthritis is no picnic. From achy joints getting out of bed to unwanted stiffness throughout the day—nobody asks to have arthritis. According to the CDC, 24% of Americans have arthritis. And arthritis can affect working-age adults, which can make earning an income more difficult. So just how can people with arthritis improve their mobility and live better? One effective way is through chiropractic treatment.
What is arthritis?
Simply put, arthritis is the swelling of the joints. It may seem simple enough, but anyone who has arthritis knows the pain it can cause. There are many types of arthritis—over 100 types—but the most common form is osteoarthritis. Someone who has arthritis, from osteoarthritis to rheumatoid arthritis or lupus, experiences the following problems in their joints:
While there are many different ways to treat arthritis—from regular exercise to maintaining a healthy weight—in this blog we’ll focus on the ways chiropractic treatment can help a person who has arthritis.
Should anyone with arthritis see a chiropractor?
Chiropractors are excellent doctors to treat arthritis—we’re experts on the spine and joints! But can anyone who has arthritis benefit from chiropractic care? The answer: yes and no. Read on and we’ll explain.
Osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia. According to the Arthritis Foundation, chiropractic treatment for osteoarthritis is one of the safest treatments available. Your doctor can make adjustments and your arthritis can only benefit. Patients with fibromyalgia also find alleviated symptoms with chiropractic care.
Inflammatory arthritis. Inflammatory types of arthritis, like rheumatoid arthritis or psoriatic arthritis, are not effectively treated with traditional chiropractic techniques, according to the Arthritis Foundation. Treating an actively inflamed area can be harmful to the patient.
So, what can a chiropractor do?
A lot, actually! Traditional chiropractic adjustments are an excellent option for people with common non-inflammatory conditions, like osteoarthritis. For these patients, we recommend:
- Adjustments. We can help improve your pain and mobility by making safe adjustments to your spine.
- Soft-tissue therapy. Gently massaging the muscles experiences pain and spasms help reduce pain and tenderness.
- Exercises and stretching. Increasing your range of motion through stretching and exercises can be a big help and relief to patients with arthritis.
What can a chiropractor do for inflammatory types of arthritis?
While it’s not recommended that a chiropractor manually work on a joint that is actively inflamed, there are some common alternative treatments available:
- Ultrasound. Although commonly used for imaging, ultrasound can be an effective treatment for arthritis. The emitted waves have a massage effect on the joints, offering relief to patients.
- Electrotherapy. Another way to gently treat inflamed joints is by sending tiny, painless electric pulses through the joints, which can help to repair damage and reduce pain.
- Low-level laser therapy. It’s not as scary as it sounds—using a laser to penetrate deep into the tissue can be an effective therapy.
Receive treatment for your arthritis at Petett Chiropractic
If you have arthritis, we want to help reduce and relieve your pain through effective treatments. Don’t go through another day of pain. Contact us today to make an appointment and receive the care you need.