Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an inflammatory condition that can result in painful symptoms. This autoimmune disorder affects a large number of people across the world. Even though it is not possible for you to entirely cure this condition, you can effectively manage its symptoms with the help of various treatments and lifestyle changes.
Symptoms Of RA
Rheumatoid arthritis can lead to various symptoms that might affect your daily activities. Some of them are listed below:
- Pain, inflammation, swelling, and stiffness in one or more joints
- Weight loss
- Tiredness or fatigue
- The same problems on both sides of the body (like pain in both hands or both knees)
Causes Of RA
This is an autoimmune disorder which is caused when your immune system mistakenly attacks the healthy cells in your body. The exact causes that trigger this abnormal activity of the immune system are still unknown. However, there are certain things that can increase the risk of RA. Some of these are discussed below.
Risk Factors Of RA
The following are some of the important risk factors of RA that you should be aware of:
Age: Rheumatoid arthritis can begin at any age, however, the likelihood of developing this condition increases with age.
Sex: The possibility of RA is more in women than men.
Smoking: Smoking can increase the risk of RA.
Obesity: Obesity and overweight can increase the chance of this condition.
How RA Is Diagnosed?
Different methods are used for diagnosing RA. The preliminary step is the physical exam where your doctor looks for the symptoms of this condition. Blood tests will also be conducted to make sure that you are suffering from RA and not some other diseases with the same symptoms.
Additionally, X-rays and other imaging tests will be conducted for finding the damages caused by this condition.
Who Treats RA?
If you are diagnosed with RA, then it is better to consult a rheumatologist who is specialized in treating various types of arthritis and many other similar conditions. He can advise the right treatment for you.
How To Treat RA?
The symptoms of RA including pain, inflammation, etc. can be controlled using medications. Doctors will also suggest different physical therapies and exercises for maintaining the flexibility of the affected joints.
Seeing a rheumatologist can help to know the right treatment options that can be suitable for your condition.