Arthritis, popularly known as 'Old Person's Disease,' is more than meets the eye. This article is here to debunk the myth and shed light on all critical aspects of this prevalent health issue.
What is Arthritis?
Arthritis is a broad term covering over 100 different types of joint diseases affecting people of all ages, sex, and races. It refers to joint inflammation and encompasses a range of symptoms commonly presented as joint pain, stiffness, swelling, and decreased range of motion.
Arthritis Isn't Just an 'Old Personâs Disease'
The widely accepted notion that arthritis only affects the aged population is a common misconception. It is true that the risk of arthritis increases with age, especially osteoarthritis. However, many forms of arthritis, including rheumatoid arthritis, gout, and lupus, can occur in adults and even children. In fact, nearly 300,000 babies and children have arthritis or a rheumatic condition.
Probing the Age Factor
While age is a critical risk factor, it's far from the only one. Genetics, weight, previous injury, occupational hazards, some high-performance sports, and certain infections and diseases can all influence arthritis development.
Recent Studies and Findings
Recent research reiterates that arthritis is not confined to the elderly. A study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that more than half of people with arthritis are under 65 years of age. Additionally, an alarming increase in arthritis cases amongst the young population has prompted researchers to focus on the impact of lifestyle factors and genetics on this condition.
Addressing the Controversy
Public ignorance about arthritis being an 'Old Personâs Disease' often delays diagnosis and optimal treatment in younger individuals, leading to irreversible damage. Raising awareness about early-onset arthritis, its signs, symptoms, and treatment is crucial.
Dispelling myths is the first step toward understanding and battling any disease. Acknowledging that arthritis isnât just an 'Old Personâs Disease' can help prompt early detection, facilitate effective treatment, and improve the quality of life for millions of people worldwide.