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Degenerative arthritis (osteoarthritis) usually produces symptoms of pain and stiffness in your joints. Rheumatoid arthritis and gout are among the more than 100 types of arthritis, which is sometimes referred to as joint inflammation, joint pain, or joint disease.

Arthritis often affects the joints in your wrists, knees, hips, or fingers. It can also involve your connective tissues and organs.

Arthritis afflicts about 20% of adults but is more common in older people. While its cause is unknown, certain conditions and lifestyles can exacerbate or increase the likelihood of developing arthritis. Here are some important factors about the condition:

  • Age: Older, worn joints may be more prone to arthritis.
  • Gender: Women are more likely to get the disease.
  • Extra weight: The stress on your knees and other joints puts you at a greater risk.
  • Injuries: Joint damage can lead to arthritis.
  • Infection: Joints infected by bacteria, viruses, or fungi can become arthritic.
  • Work: Hard, physical labor, especially involving knee bends and squats, makes you more susceptible.

Symptoms of arthritis include:

  • Swollen or stiff joints
  • Red or warm joints
  • Tenderness
  • Difficult movements

Seek medical attention if occasional joint pain or stiffness doesn’t go away or gets worse. Your doctor may recommend medications, physical therapy, splints, weight loss, or, in rare cases, surgery.

Health-care experts recommend arthritis sufferers educate themselves to help incorporate self-care routines into their schedules.

The best advice may be to start exercising, which may help reduce pain, increase mobility, and postpone disability.

Tips adapted from WebMD

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