How Do You Know If You Have Arthritis Without Going To The Doctor?

I think I have arthritis but how early can you get arthritis? How does arthritis start? And how do you know if you have arthritis? So many questions, right? That’s another question. You will find all the answers right here in this article.

There are millions and millions of middle-aged or older people who simply go about living their lives despite experiencing joint pain. They assume that it’s quite a common occurrence and learn to live with it as a part of aging. Because there are certain inevitable changes that occur in your body as you get older, right?

How Do You Know If You Have Arthritis

And that’s the reason why they don’t think it’s necessary to consult a doctor or seek professional medical help about this kind of joint pain and swelling.

Such an unhealthy attitude towards your body and aging has been a part of our culture and society for a very long time now. In fact, many young adults who experience joint pain, stiffness, or swelling don’t even wonder for a single second that they might have arthritis at such an early age. Maybe it’s the result of lack of awareness or some other logical reason I bet.

So how early can you get arthritis? There’s no specific age because even children get diagnosed with arthritis. And how does arthritis start? Let’s talk about it below.

How does Arthritis Start?

How do you know if you have arthritis

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The term arthritis means inflammation of the joints. This inflammation normally occurs in the tendons and muscles located around the joints. Arthritis also develops in the skin and internal organs of the body. Given that arthritis is the inflammation of joints and that a human body has multiple joints, there are over 100 different types of arthritis with no common causes.

That means every other type of arthritis has its own unique symptoms and causes.

But there are certain factors that play an important role in some of the most common types of arthritis. These factors include the hereditary component, what happens to your body during your lifetime, and how healthy and active is your current lifestyle.

In this article, we are going to talk about the disease of arthritis in general and also about the 3 most common types of arthritis; osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and psoriatic arthritis.

How do You Know if You Have Arthritis?

Many people neglect the most common symptoms of arthritis as merely a part of aging or a result of some minor injury or damage to the joint, muscle, or tendon. But more often than not, it is not so. We completely dismiss these common symptoms and only go to the doctor when the pain becomes unbearable or when the swelling makes joint movement almost impossible.

So in order to avoid this, let’s look at a few symptoms of arthritis so you have the correct answer to this question.

Joint Pain

Arthritis, in general, gives rise to joint pain. Now this pain can either be mild or as severe as a burning sensation. Normally, joint pain occurs after that particular joint has been subjected to even a little bit of extra movement or pressure.

For example, arthritis in the knee joint can give rise to pain or a burning sensation in the knee after you’ve climbed a flight of stairs or maybe after gardening.

In most other cases, joint pain also occurs immediately after you wake up in the morning. So how do you know if you have arthritis? The answer is joint pain.

How do you know if you have arthritis

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Joint Swelling

Swelling and pain always go hand in hand, especially when you have arthritis. Inevitably, joint pain will always be followed by joint swelling. The swelling develops due to the formation of synovium fluid in the joint space. This fluid does the job of making up for all the lost cartilage, which means it merely acts as a cushion to the joint.

The formation of synovium fluid in the joint space causes the joint to swell up. And this swelling of the joint gives rise to more pain and makes movement even more difficult.

How do you know if you have arthritis

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Joint Stiffness

I think I have arthritis is something that you should be telling yourself as soon as you start feeling some serious stiffness in your joints. The best way to figure out whether this stiffness should be a cause of worry is to compare the motion of the stiff joint to the joint motion on the opposite side.

Joint stiffness is a very common symptom that usually is at its worst when you wake up in the morning or when you’re seated in the same position for a very long time. As the joints moves when you do some form of activity, they tend to loosen up a bit.

Joint Deformity

Since the cartilage of the joint is constantly being subjected to damage due to the condition of arthritis, it can cause the joint to develop a deformed or angled appearance. This usually takes place when the cartilage is worn away. The most common places where joint deformity occurs are in the fingers and knees. The former becomes crooked while the latter develops a bow-legged or knock-kneed appearance.

How do you know if you have arthritis

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Grinding Sensation in the Joints

The joint deformity is not the only consequence of the cartilage wearing away. When you feel and hear a grinding sensation in your joints. Let me explain this in detail.

When the cartilage of your joint is worn away, the lining that covers your bone ceases to exist. The absence of this smooth lining exposes the bone, giving rise to rough movements. And when the joint does not move smoothly, you end up feeling and at times even hearing a grinding sensation in that particular spot.

And if you really want to make sure that it’s the joint that’s causing the grinding sensation, all you have to do is place your hand on that particular bone while moving it back and forth.

Joint Lumps and Bumps

How does arthritis start? By forming lumps and bumps around the joints. The condition of arthritis gives rise to bone spurs or pockets of fluid called mucous cysts. These are nothing but lumps or protrusions forming around the joints. Joint lumps and bumps are more commonly found on tiny finger joints. But they have the ability to develop on any other part of the body as well.

Joint Tenderness

When one side or both the sides of your joint are tender to touch. For example, if you have arthritis on only one side of a particular joint, that side will be more tender to touch than the other side. Since arthritis is the inflammation of the joints, pressing around the joints will inevitably cause pain.

Warm/Red Joints

Along with joint pain and swelling, warmth and redness of the joint are also two very common symptoms of arthritis. These two conditions can also be a cause of some joint infection.

So it’s always a better idea to consult a doctor in order to properly evaluate the formation of warmth and redness in the joints. But more often than not, they are associated with joint pain and swelling caused by arthritis.

How do you know if you have arthritis

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How do I know if I have Osteoarthritis?

I think I have arthritis, how early can you get arthritis, how does arthritis start, how do I know if I have rheumatoid/psoriatic arthritis

One of the three most common types of arthritis is osteoarthritis. It normally occurs in the weight-bearing, larger joints of the body, like the knees, hips, and lower spine. And the not so common spots that develop osteoarthritis are fingers, neck, and toes.

So in this case, in the initial stages, only that particular joint gets affected. While the soreness and stiffness come later. This usually occurs when you don’t move the arthritis-affected joint as much as you should. The joint becomes extremely sore and painful once you get up in the morning. And it usually takes some time to be able to move that particular bone freely.

Strengthening Exercises for Knee Osteoarthritis

How do I Know If I Have Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Unlike osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis develops in the smaller joints of the body, such as the fingers and toes. And if not that, then it affects only a single larger joint. In most cases, this single larger joint is either the knee or the shoulder (you can use shoulder brace in this case).

How do I know if I have rheumatoid arthritis? The answer is simple. Let’s say that you have rheumatoid arthritis in your finger joints. Since joint swelling is one of the most common symptoms of arthritis, you will notice some swelling on any one of your fingers, like the right index finger.

Now you should know that rheumatoid arthritis is symmetrical, which means that the left index finger will also equally swell up.

Some other symptoms of this type of arthritis are fever, shortness of breath, and chest pain.

Rheumatoid Arthritis and the Benefits of Exercise

How do I Know If I Have Psoriatic Arthritis?

This type of arthritis is an autoimmune disease, which means the immune system, instead of protecting the body, causes more damage to the body. So how do I know if I have psoriatic arthritis? The disease either gradually increases over time or may develop pretty quickly.

Swelling of the joints along with pain is the most common symptom of psoriatic arthritis. While some other not so common symptoms are redness of the eye, pain in the eye, and some changes developing in the nails.

Psoriatic Arthritis: Causes and Treatments You Really Need to Know

Wrapping It Up

Arthritis is a disease that has the ability to damage not only your joints but also internal organs and skin. But there are many ways to ensure that this damage is minimized. And these are the ways that also considerably reduce joint pain and swelling. (natural relief from arthritis pain)

So how do you know if you have arthritis? When you experience:

  • Joint pain.
  • Joint swelling.
  • ​Joint stiffness.
  • ​Joint deformity.
  • ​Grinding sensation in the joints.
  • ​Joint lumps and bumps.
  • ​Joint tenderness.
  • Warm/red joints.

The kind of assistance and guidance that you will achieve after consulting a doctor is the only thing that will help you in better diagnosing and completely curing the condition, no matter what type of arthritis you have. So don’t wait long enough before you seek professional medical help.

Did you find what you were looking for in this article? Are you now well informed about all the different kinds of symptoms associated with arthritis in general?

Please let me know in the comments section below.

Sources:

1. http://www.healthline.com/health-slideshow/early-symptoms-arthritis#2

2. http://www.arthritis.org/about-arthritis/understanding-arthritis/do-i-have-arthritis.php

3. http://www.orthop.washington.edu/?q=patient-care/articles/arthritis/frequently-asked-questions-about-arthritis.html

4. http://www.niams.nih.gov/health_info/arthritis/

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