Arthritis is one of them most common of chronic diseases. It is three to four times more common in women and becomes more common as we age. Up to 80 percent of the population will have some form of arthritis by the time they reach their 80s and 90s.
While there are more than 100 different types of arthritis, osteoarthritis is the most common form. Osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage (or cushion between joints) becomes altered, leading to pain, stiffness and swelling.
While there is no cure for osteoarthritis, there are many medications that can help relieve symptoms. Joint replacement surgery is usually the final option for the most severe cases.
You can minimize the symptoms of arthritis by managing life change and menopause symptoms, maintaining an ideal body weight and gently exercising to strengthen and stretch your joints. Muscle weakness and instability is a secondary manifestation of osteoarthritis, so maintaining good muscle strength around your joints and participate in low-stress exercise like walking, aquatic exercises and recumbent bicycling can help.