OA, or osteoarthritis, is a painful type of arthritis that millions of people suffer from every day. OA can target certain sections or bones in your body. Most painfully, it can target the spine.
What Is Osteoarthritis of the Spine?
Spine osteoarthritis is osteoarthritis that targets the spinal column. Osteoarthritis itself is a degenerative disease of the joint. It occurs when bone cartilage wears down. As a result, joints tighten and bones can begin to rub together.
Everyone’s spine has cartilage that acts as a cushion between each of the discs in your back and neck. Spinal OA attacks that cartilage, causing it to wear down and eventually disappear. This debilitating condition can cause extensive pain, reduce movement, and make it harder to engage in everyday activities. In extreme cases, it can render a person largely immobile and bend someone over, giving them the appearance of a crooked finger.
What Are Some Symptoms of Spinal Osteoarthritis?
The most common symptom of OA is pain in your back or neck. Of course, that pain can be caused by a variety of issues, so you’ll need more information than just pain. You may also experience pain that is localized to your spinal column, have difficulty pending or moving, have joint tenderness, or experience weakness in your extremities. This weakness may present itself as numbness, tingling in your fingers or toes, or a variety of other causes.
At the end of the day, you should see a medical professional for more advice. Spinal osteoarthritis can be treated by a variety of methods, including pain relief medication, massage, acupressure, exercise, and physical rehabilitation. While there is no cure for this disease, there are a variety of treatments that can lessen its severity and make you feel much better.
What Causes Spinal Osteoarthritis?
Generally speaking, this disease happens to older individuals – usually people who are at least 45. If it happens in younger people, they like have had a history of spinal problems, a history of OA, or some sort of traumatic injury to their spine.
Genetics are a common cause of OA: If a family member has had the disorder, you are more likely to have had it. Men are more likely to have the disorder than women, but it is important to realize that this disease can come from more than just genetics. There are at least two conditions that make someone more likely to develop OA: Being overweight or having a job that requires repetitive movement.
As you can see, spinal osteoarthritis does not have a simple cause. Like most diseases, its causes are often a combination of genetics and real-life circumstances. While this condition can be exceptionally painful, there is good news: With medication and treatment, the worst symptoms of spinal osteoarthritis can be treated. That’s why it is so important that you seek treatment for this painful disorder as soon as possible.