Posted by on February 20, 2019

Understanding Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis is a chronic autoimmune disease and is one of the most common inflammatory arthritis found in people all around the globe. Although rheumatoid arthritis can affect people from any age group, it’s found most common in people over the age of 35 years. Most people with rheumatoid arthritis experience intermittent periods of intense joint pain and periods of having no symptoms at all which often makes them ignore the symptoms of the disease due to the inconsistency of the flares of pain, but that may worsen the condition of the disease. Research has shown that early diagnosis and treatment is the best way to avoid repercussions like irreversible joint damage, organ damage, and disability.

Symptoms

In rheumatoid arthritis, the body’s immune system starts attacking the healthy cells by mistake which causes inflammation and painful swelling. It is primarily a joint condition, but in some conditions, it might also cause inflammation in the other areas of the body such as tissues surrounding the heart, lungs and the whites of the eyes. These symptoms might vary from person to person.

 

  • How does it affect the joints?

To understand rheumatoid arthritis we need to unravel how it affects the joints of a person. This arthritis is symmetrical in nature which means that is a joint on one side of the body is inflamed then it would automatically affect the other side of the joint, the joint on the other side of the body will also be inflamed.  The joints affected by this type of arthritis frequently becomes red, swollen, tender, and painful. The stiffness is especially escalated in the morning. If this disease is ignored for too long then it might lead to structural changes and deformity in joints.

  • How does it affect the skin?

Although skin inflammation is not a common symptom found in people, one-quarter of people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis find painless lumps developed under the skin. These rheumatoid nodules(lumps) are formed due to inflammation of the small blood vessels under the skin and its size may fall between the size of a pea to a walnut.

  • How does it affect the nervous system?

People suffering from this type of arthritis may find weakness and sensation of pins and needles in their hands, wrists, and ankles. It is caused due to nerve compression as the inflammation and swelling of joints and tendons sometimes cause the nerves to become compressed.

  • How does it affect the eyes, lungs, and heart?

Although these symptoms are not common, 30% of people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis might face inflammation in the eyes, lungs, and heart.

What causes rheumatoid arthritis?

While the exact cause of rheumatoid arthritis is unknown, but some research has shown that it is an autoimmune disease, meaning that the immunity system starts attacking the body instead of protecting it in case of this type of arthritis. The attack of the immune system on the body might cause inflammation in joints, skin nerves, eyes, lungs, and heart. Scientists also believe that some inherited genes might also trigger the disease. Although no specific gene has been marked, some research shows that rheumatoid arthritis can be inherited down the family. Furthermore, some environmental factors like smoking tobacco can also be held responsible for triggering the disease.

Understanding the symptoms and process behind rheumatoid arthritis might help you get diagnosed in time. Remember not to avoid these symptoms as being tired or overworked, and get treatment in time. You can also contact BNCHY center for various therapies that might provide you relief from joint pain.

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