How Can You Treat Degenerative Arthritis?


Quick Answer

Treatment for degenerative arthritis includes physical therapy, medication, weight loss and exercise, according to Healthline. In addition, surgery is sometimes an option to replace or repair damaged joints. Hot or cold packs can provide temporary relief, notes WebMD.

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How Can You Treat Degenerative Arthritis?
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Full Answer

Degenerative arthritis, also known as osteoarthritis, is more common in overweight people, reports WebMD. For obese patients, losing weight and exercising regularly can help lessen pressure on joints. A healthy diet for osteoarthritis includes whole grains, lean proteins, fruits and vegetables. Physical activity is one of the best treatments for joint pain and should include aerobic exercise such as bike riding, walking and dancing. It also should include strength training and stretching.

Use of cold or hot packs also can help stiff joints, notes WebMD. Patients should use whichever feels best unless they are injured, in which case cold is best for a few days. Cold or heat can be applied several times each day. Cold packs should be covered with a towel, and heating pads should be on low settings to avoid burns. Hot or cold packs should be removed after about 20 minutes.

Osteoarthritis is a disease of aging, according to Healthline. The condition affects almost 14 percent of adults in the United States as of 2014 and is a primary cause of disability. It affects more than a third of people over age 65. In addition to obesity, risk factors include jobs that stress joints and injuries to joints. The joints that are most commonly affected by osteoarthritis are in the hips, spine, knees and hands.

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