Don’t let joint pain slow you down
Joint stiffness and inflammation are the hallmark symptoms of arthritis and similar rheumatic diseases. Inflamed joints may feel especially stiff first thing in the morning, following exercise or after you rest. Joint stiffness can affect any joint—fingers, hands, wrists, elbows, shoulders, hips, ankles, feet or the jaw—and may or may not be accompanied with joint pain.
Arthritis is a complicated disease without a clear-cut cause, but knowing the warning signs can help initiate treatment early, which can help prevent further joint erosion and disease progression.
Your primary care provider can diagnose arthritis with a series of tests to check range of motion in your joints and associated pain. If you have arthritis, he or she will then develop a treatment plan. Depending on the progression of the disease, you may be referred to a specialist, known as a rheumatologist.
Self-Management Quick Tips:
- Use cold packs to numb the joints and reduce swelling.
- For significant inflammation, heat packs may provide relief.
- Immobilize the hand with a splint or brace overnight.
- Use a grip or similar device if you have trouble grasping or holding things.
For more information, contact your primary care provider or one of our rheumatologists at Marshall Internal Medicine at 304-691-1000.
October 13, 2020
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