As an insidious condition that does a great job of sneaking up on people over the course of time, osteoarthritis is a common ailment suffered by thousands of people across Canada. The knee seems particularly prone to developing it. Known as osteoarthritis of the knee, it’s the most common type of osteoarthritis. Although it is more common in people over 40, it strikes all age groups. While athletes are common sufferers of osteoarthritis of the knee, they are, by no means, the only sufferers.
What is osteoarthritis of the knee? Osteoarthritis of the knee refers to the degeneration of the actual knee joint. More specifically, this means that the hyaline cartilage covering the articulating surfaces of the bones in the knee joint have deteriorated.
What causes osteoarthritis of the knee? Typically attributed to wear and tear, there are actually many different contributing factors leading to osteoarthritis of the knee, which whether hereditary, or resulting from trauma suffered to the knee, can include:
- Trauma to knee joint, including tearing of the meniscus
- Recurrent patellar dislocation or patella fracture
- Fractures of the knee or knee dislocation
- Ligamentous instability, such as an ACL injury
- Various genetic factors, including the presence of arthritis in family medical history
Symptoms of osteoarthritis of the knee vary. Should you feel pain or stiffness, loss of full range of motion, muscle weakness, or baker’s cysts – either jointly, or individually – you may, in fact, have osteoarthritis of the knee.
Osteoarthritis of the knee can leave a person feeling surgery is a necessary and sole option. But not necessarily. Several different treatments are available to osteoarthritis of the knee patients. Although surgery may be necessary in some cases, various non-surgical treatments can help restore knee tissue and decrease or eliminate the pain osteoarthritis of the knee is known for. These treatments may include:
- Physiotherapy – Strength training and physical exercise to rebuild muscle can work to decrease pain.
- Viscosupplementation – This process involves the injection of hyaluronic acid into the knee joint. As a naturally occurring protein in the body, hyaluronic acid lubricates the joint and increases fluid viscosity.
- The use of a custom knee brace – Custom fitted, this knee brace works to stabilize and decrease wear and tear on knee and knee joints, making everyday tasks, such as walking or running, much more comfortable – which is liberating for osteoarthritis sufferers!
Used separately or as part of a combined treatment plan, these alternatives to surgery can help you return to your regular level of physical activity without the consistent pain or instability osteoarthritis of the knee is so famous for. These alternative treatments also mean a far less sedentary recovery period, meaning you are able to recover while still enjoying life without having to take time off work or to completely eliminate physical activity from your regular routine.
Osteoarthritis of the knee can be a very painful, debilitating disease that can greatly impact your ability to complete daily tasks or enjoy your favourite activities and participate in sports. Although surgery remains a viable option to help relieve the pain of osteoarthritis of the knee, it is important to remember that it is not your sole option!
To find out more about osteoarthritis of the knee and what non-surgical options are available to treat it, contact Athletic Edge Sports Medicine by calling (416) 800-0800, or visit www.aesm.ca
Many people incorrectly assume that golf is a low-level physical activity, and that, therefore golf injuries are uncommon. Anything but! Whether you are an avid golfer who spends every possible minute on the course, or you only pick up the clubs a few times a year, it’s important to remember that golf injuries are common no matter your level of play. A golf injury prevention program allows you to get the most out of every day you spend on the fairway, while at the same time keeps you in tip top shape – a considerable side-bonus!
Golf injuries are incredibly common among all ages and skill levels, most often occurring courtesy of improper swing or grip techniques, or stemming from repetitive bad habits when swinging. Improper stance, swing or grip; stiffness and inflexibility can all lead to injuries in the arms, wrists, hands, hip, back or shoulders. The repetitive motion of the swing is unavoidable in golf. In fact, people are often encouraged to remember their best swing technique and repeat it. But improper technique can be very hard on the muscles and joints. Visits to a golf injury prevention clinic where a conditioning program is designed for you not only helps to correct your stance and improve your swing, but can also treat any ongoing golf injuries.
As with any type of sport, one of the best ways to prevent golf injuries is to stretch. This may seem like a simple enough solution, but it’s one many people ignore despite the common knowledge that not stretching introduces risk of injury. Similarly, improper stretching is a waste of time. Proper stretching techniques, designed for your needs is part of a golf injury prevention program that can fit like the very golf glove you wouldn’t do without, and help you avoid golf injuries from the outset. Making sure that your whole body is prepared for the game will allow you to stay on the course longer, and help you avoid pain once you’re back in the clubhouse.
Better yet – and this is the part most golfers love to hear – a golf injury prevention program doesn’t just help you avoid golf injuries it also helps you improve your game! No matter your skill level, a golf injury prevention program can be customized to meet both your current needs and your future goals. Like technique and training, equipment also plays an essential role in preventing golf injuries and improving your golf game. A golf injury prevention program educates you for better club selection, ensuring that you choose and use the best equipment. Clubs that are too short, or grips that are too small, can lead to golf injuries that can inhibit your ability to play and enjoy the game.
Many golf injuries occur as a result of a combination of things, including poor technique, insufficient physical conditioning and improper equipment. Taking advantage of a golf injury prevention program helps prevent injuries that can negatively impact your ability to enjoy a day on the course.
For details on our golf injury prevention program, or how to treat ongoing golf injuries, contact Athletic Edge Sports Medicine by calling (416) 800-0800, or visit www.aesm.ca
Running is a favourite activity for many who enjoy the clarity of mind, freedom and health benefits it offers. Whether you run daily to keep fit, wear off calories from delicious food you just can’t give up, or are a dedicated life-long marathon runner, you know that staying in shape is important if you want to reach your running goals. However, most runners are also keenly aware that running injuries can disrupt one’s ability to strive for peak performance, and even inhibit their ability to perform at all.
Running is rife with a host of possible injuries, many of which can happen inadvertently. Sprains, torn ligaments, Achilles tendon problems, ankle instability, knee and joint pain, or plantar fasciitis are all common injuries experienced by runners. A running injury clinic can not only help you prevent injuries like these, but also help treat your running injury once it has been sustained.
A running injury clinic is equipped to provide you with a number of important services, the first of which is an assessment. This includes a running shoe analysis, a treadmill running assessment, and a computerized gait analysis. Results from these tests are tools used to develop a customized plan to help treat your running injury and get you back on track – literally!
A recent study by the University of Calgary has found that proper strength training is crucial for rehabilitating running injuries as well as preventing them. A running injury clinic will work you through strength training exercises to help you soothe and treat your running injury. By teaching you how to correctly complete a customized exercise regimen that will benefit you the most, a running injury clinic prepares you for the future and lays the groundwork for injury-free peak physical conditioning.
What also happens during this process – and this is not unimportant – is the opportunity to address the current issues, habits of strain or neglect and other problems that stem from your running injury. This component of treatment is invaluable since it focuses you on changing the very things that can cause a running injury in the first place. This long term benefit of treating your running injury at a running injury clinic can revolutionize your performance and longevity in the sport. All too often, runners will run through the initial pain, hoping that it will go away. And, all too often this initial pain is the sign of something that could become serious, and frequently does. It is critical, in order to keep you at the top of your game, to not ignore the early signs of a running injury, but to seek the professional care and guidance of a running injury clinic.
If you have suffered a running injury, there are several options that may be available to you. A running injury clinic will detail what these options are and help you treat your running injury. Working with a medical professional specifically trained in sports medicine not only reduces pain and limitations caused by an existing injury but also offers you a better understanding of your current habits and how to create an injury-free running regimen in the future – many times with the help of proper equipment and strength training. It’s a win-win formula: treat your running injury – and prevent future injuries.
To find out more about our running injury clinic, or how to treat your running injury, contact Athletic Edge Sports Medicine by calling (416) 800-0800, or visit www.aesm.ca
Basketball is a celebrated sport that people from all ages and walks of life enjoy. The roots of basketball hail from Canada and the small Ontario town of Almonte. Here, in 1891, the game was invented by Dr. James Naismith. Mere hours from Almonte, Toronto is filled with basketball lovers who are both die-hard Toronto Raptors fans and active basketball players. Basketball is a great way to stay healthy and in shape. It’s also a wonderful way to enjoy leisure time, and even raise money to support Toronto communities. Bay Street Hoops League Basketball is a charity basketball tournament that does just that.
Through the Bay Street Hoops charity, lawyers, accountants and other financial service professionals participate in one of Toronto’s largest sports charities. In the past 15 years, The Bay Street Hoops Charity has raised over $2,000,000 for Toronto children and youth charities supporting Toronto communities.
Basketball is not only a competitive sport but also an excellent form of exercise and stress-release, as many executives who play basketball know. Because basketball is a fast-paced sport, it can present risks for minor and major sport injuries. It is important to be physically prepared before you play, and to exercise caution while on the court to reduce the likelihood of injury.
Here are some basketball “Do’s” and “Don’ts” to help you play a safer game:
• There is a reason professional basketball players wear high-necked running shoes: they provide much needed ankle support. Ankle injuries are very common in basketball so this kind of footwear is a must.
• Exercise will also condition your body to play basketball without injury. Core stability training, cardio training and a non-aerobic cardio program are all recommended.
• Dynamic stretching that includes sport specific drills will stretch out muscles and is ideal both before and after you hit the basketball court.
• Hydration is also very important as dehydration can have potentially dangerous outcomes. You’ll often see pros drinking plenty of fluids during the game, sipping on their bottles of water, Gatorade and Powerade.
• Static stretching prior to a game or practice is recommended
• Do not play through pain. If you begin experiencing pain at any point, stop playing right away because you may have an injury which will be further aggravated without immediate rest. If you already have a previous injury, resist temptation to resume playing basketball pre-maturely. Make sure a clinician has given you clearance for shooting hoops again.
Even the most seasoned basketball players get injured from time to time. Most basketball injuries can be treated through physical therapy and rehabilitation. If you think you may have injured yourself while playing basketball you may want to seek medical attention. Sports therapy clinics are medical facilities that treat people with sports injuries. While you may think that only professional athletes are treated by sports therapy clinics, this is certainly not the case. Many people who play basketball on a casual basis find relief and assistance through a sports therapy clinic. If you love to play sports like basketball, having a good sports therapy clinic in your back pocket is wise. It can offer you advice about nutrition and other important factors that will ensure that you have a safe and enjoyable athletic experience. And if and when you do suffer a sports injury, you have somewhere to turn to for help.
For more information about how you can enjoy playing basketball safely, or if you have a basketball injury needing attention, call Athletic Edge Sports Medicine at 416-800-0800 or visit www.aesm.ca
Police throughout North America deserve kudos for their commitment to keeping us safe. While a myriad of events help make Toronto famous, it’s our police that oversee each of them and ensure we enjoy them safely. Police are an essential part of the fabric of our community.
For the past 32 years The North American Police Soccer Tournament has raised money for charities in need. Each year The North American Police Soccer Tournament organizers select a truly needy charity for which they will raise funds. This year, Kidsport Ontario will be the beneficiary of The 2012 North American Police Soccer Tournament proceeds. Kidsport Ontario is a charity that provides financial assistance to kids across Ontario for registration fees and equipment. Their mission is ensuring children can be active and engaged in sports even without the financial means to do so.
This year’s Toronto North American Police Soccer Tournament is slated for September 5th – 7th. Over 30 police agencies will be participating, and you can offer support by attending and cheering teams on! Remember, the North American Police Soccer Tournament raises money for a very worthwhile cause. And it’s a lot of fun to watch, as many around the world know.
Soccer’s worldwide appeal is undeniable. Physical, financially affordable, strategic, fast-paced…what’s not to love? But any physical game presents risks for being injured, whether you’re a police officer in the North American Police Soccer Tournament or just a casual soccer player enjoying a game in the park. It’s wise to be aware of common soccer injuries so that you can try to avoid them, identify them if one happens to you and know when and how to seek treatment.
Some of the most common soccer injuries or conditions plaguing soccer players include ankle sprains, tendonitis, concussions, pulled hamstrings, muscle cramps, blisters, plantar fasciitis, shin splints, stress fractures, strains and sprains, knee injuries like a torn ACL and torn knee cartilage and more. Sure seems like a long list, doesn’t it?! Recognizing that soccer is a very physical, quickly paced sport will help you understand why. Typically, common soccer injuries fall into one of two groups: cumulative or acute.
Common soccer injuries of a cumulative nature occur as the result of overuse of the joints, muscles and soft tissues repeatedly over time. What begins as a small re-occurring ache or pain can grow into a serious injury or condition if it is not treated.
Common soccer injuries that are acute happen from sudden impact or force. Acute injury pain can usually be felt immediately.
To avoid these kinds of common soccer injuries, basic measures can be taken: warm up before you play, use protective equipment, employ safe techniques for play, check the field before you play, play in proper weather conditions, stay hydrated and stretch afterwards. If you’re injured take time to rest and seek treatment for a full recovery before returning to the field.
Common soccer injuries can often be treated through physical therapy and rehabilitation, which is covered under most health plans.
For more information about treating common soccer injuries that are both painful and annoying, contact Athletic Edge Sports Medicine at 416-800-0800 or visit www.aesm.ca
Calling all golfers! This August, The Toronto General and Western Foundation and the Lew Dunn Foundation will be bringing you the 13th annual Lew Dunn Memorial Golf Classic!
In 13 years this charity has raised millions of dollars, enabling The University Health Network and the University of Toronto to provide student scholarships for those studying to become Colorectal and Oncologic surgeons. The Lew Dunn Scholarship promotes education and research that enhances care for patients with colon cancer, raises awareness of the disease, and develops better treatments. This charity isn’t just making a difference to Canada but also worldwide.
This year, the Lew Dunn Memorial Golf Classic will be held on August 20th, and the Toronto General and Western Foundation website has all the essential information you need.
When participating in a golf tournament, well made and great fitting golf shoes are paramount. When you consider that the average golfer walks about 4-5 miles during a round, spending several hours on his or her feet, it’s little wonder that golf shoes not only contribute to the success of your game but the comfort (and survival) of it as well! An ill-fitting pair of golf shoes can affect your swing and stability, not to mention that many golf courses make proper golf shoes mandatory. The wrong shoes can set you back in a number of ways. The best golf shoes are those you don’t even think about while wearing. They also help your swing by keeping you well-grounded with a solid grip on the tees, fairways and greens. Here are our top 3 tips when it comes to choosing the best golf shoes for your feet.
How to Choose the Best Golf Shoes – Tip 1: Sizing: The fit of the golf shoe is obviously important. Before choosing the size of shoe, measure both your feet. If one foot is larger than the other, choose your size based on the larger foot. Make sure you try on new shoes wearing socks you’ll be golfing in, and leave a half an inch of space between the end of the shoe and your big toe. Golf shoes should fit tighter in the middle of the foot than regular shoes, since it’s the middle of the foot providing the most support during your golf swing.
How to Choose the Best Golf Shoes – Tip 2: Weather-wise: Weather is an important factor. Invest in golf shoes that are waterproof and offer your feet good ventilation.
How to Choose the Best Golf Shoes – Tip 3: Lighten-the-load: The weight of your golf shoes will make a huge difference. A lighter golf shoe with softer spikes will reduce stress on your legs and feet when you walk and swing, making for a better overall golf experience.
Choosing the best golf shoes for your feet will help to reduce injuries, but not necessarily prevent them. It is important to remember that there are other golf injuries that are common to golfers. These include too much strain on the back which can lead to lower back pain, herniated disks and muscle spasms. If you have pain in your body that you think is the result of a golf injury, consider consulting a sports therapy clinic for treatment options. Assistance for a golf injury soon after it emerges is your best shot at returning to normal and continuing to play the game you love.
If you have an injury or condition that is affecting your ability to golf, contact Athletic Edge Sports Medicine or visit www.aesm.ca
Runners start your engines: The Annual Beaches Tune Up Jazz Run offers something for everyone and it’s just around the corner!
The mandate of The Canadian Running Series Foundation is to promote healthy lifestyles through running, especially for youth. The Canadian Running Series Foundation does its good work through athletic events like The Beaches Tune Up Jazz Run as well as other smaller charities promoting excellence for Canadian Runners.
This year The Canadian Running Series presents The Beaches Tune Up Jazz Run which includes a 5km walk or run; a 10 km run and a staggering 20km run. Starting at The Beaches Kew Gardens, The Sunday July 29th 2012 Beaches Tune Up Jazz Run is a pleasure for all participants, from casual walker to hard-core runner.
After a long winter of hitting the treadmill instead of focusing on marathon mileage, here are some tips that will help you make the most of your day at The Beaches Tune Up Jazz Run:
• Tips for running a marathon – 1: Dress for the weather. Check the forecast the morning of your event and dress appropriately. High or low temperatures, excessive humidity, and wind can all take a toll on your body. Also, make sure you test-drive the sneakers, socks, and clothes you plan on racing in before the race itself. If they bother you in any way, dump them and opt for others. Small problems identified in a test run will only be intensified problems during the race. It’s important to take steps to alleviate all discomfort before your big day.
• Tips for running a marathon – 2: Drink lots of water – well in advance. Leaving hydration until the morning-of is leaving it too late. You should make a conscious effort to drink lots of water at least 48 hours before the start of your marathon, and drink it before you get thirsty. By the time you start feeling thirsty, your body may already be experiencing stress.
• Tips for running a marathon – 3: Don’t get ahead of yourself. During the first mile of the race, don’t waste a lot of energy darting and weaving through the masses if you’ve been placed with people who are running slower than you. It is important to gradually build your momentum. Remember: if you are embarking on a 10 or 20 km run, you have a long way to go. Burning out early will leave you in weak shape for the last half of your journey, and you’ll want to finish strong.
• Tips for running a marathon – 4: Be prepared. Prior to the race, drive or bike along the course so that you can get a sense of the landscape, the large hills, the declines, the wide areas where breakaways will be easiest – all of these require different kinds of discipline and strategy. Having it all mapped out in your mind will do wonders for your pacing and mental preparedness.
• Tips for running a marathon – 5: Conditioning is key! In the weeks leading up to the race, walk or run regularly. If you’re training for a long distance run, plan for some practice runs before the event, trying to incorporate hills, declines and the types of diversity your marathon route will present. An ideal cross training schedule will also mix some cycling with core workouts and weights.
• Tips for running a marathon – 6: On race-day, wake up well before your start time so you can power back a big breakfast. With ample time to digest, your reserves will be stocked with energy well before the starting gun goes off.
After running your marathon, pay attention to aches or pains that last more than a day or two. Also note any concentrated pain in a particular area, as this could be a sign that you have a sports injury. Whether you are injured or not, if you are serious about running, engage in a relationship with a sports therapy clinic that can help you achieve two things: ensure prime physical condition for your casual running and races as well as supporting you through a sports injury so you don’t develop something chronic that prevents you from running entirely.
For more tips on running a marathon, or if you have suffered a sports injury, contact Athletic Edge Sports Medicine at 416-800-0800 or visit www.aesm.ca
The Toronto area comes alive with a myriad of exciting athletic events during spring and summer. As part of our commitment to raising awareness of several of these, let’s discuss one that has become a traditional and popular favourite: The Make a Wish Foundation.
The Make a Wish Foundation Canada has worked tirelessly for more than thirty years to grant the wishes of children who have life-threatening medical conditions. Their work brings strength, hope and joy to the children who need it most. In the past 30 years, more than 280,000 children around the world have watched their dreams come true, thanks to The Make a Wish Foundation.
This coming June, The Make a Wish Foundation is hosting its first ever Make a Wish “Rope for Hope”. The Rope for Hope event is unique because it challenges participants to raise pledges in exchange for the opportunity to rappel over the edge of the 30-storey Toronto City Hall. The Rope for Hope event is limited to 90 participants who must raise a minimum of $1500 to participate. If you have a passion for climbing then this is the event for you. If you want to take part in the Rope for Hope there are three categories to consider: single participant; team; or as part of the “Toss Your Boss” colleague group.
The Rope for Hope event takes place on June 19th 2012 at Toronto City Hall, but you need to secure your enrolment by both pre-registering on The Make a Wish Website and doing your fundraising ahead of time.
If you have a passion for climbing please remember that while climbing can be a fun, exhilarating experience, it can also result in injury.
Rappelling is not just the process of sliding down the rope, but also incorporates a lot of other climbing skills. You need the ability to create anchors, tie knots, manage the rope, rig the rappel device, use safety back-up systems, and retrieve the rope.
Safe rappelling is totally dependent on your equipment and your skills. If you’re a novice climber then you can be easily lulled into a false sense of security when you rappel.
Climbing and rappelling injuries frequently arise from repetitive stress on the muscles, joints and tendons which leads to tendonitis, strains and sprains. While physical rehabilitation can often treat these injuries, if they’re not fully healed, they may still be serious enough to keep you from climbing during recovery.
Climbing and rappelling can also pose risks of a second and more serious kind of injury: falling. There are also less serious consequences, such as dislocated shoulders, sprains and strains which can have long lasting effects requiring treatment for full recovery.
Climbing equipment like knee pads, elbow pads and helmets will go a long way to reduce injury in the event that you fall.
If you have a passion for climbing and rappelling, then consider The Make a Wish Foundation Rope for Hope event June 19, 2012. Unlike mountain or cliff climbing and rappelling, this is a supervised event where precautions are taken to ensure participant safety.
Many people enjoy safe, injury-free climbing and rappelling. But the reality is that no sport is without its own inherent risks to stress, strain or injury. When injured, professional help can help you recover properly and within a reduced amount of time. If you are a climber who is recovering from a climbing or rappelling injury, contact Athletic Edge Sports Medicine at 416-800-0800 or visit www.aesm.ca.
For many people, golf is the sport of choice, and for many, an ideal way to spend much of their free time. For years golfers have celebrated golf’s combination of social interaction, strategy, skill and exercise. In fact, it’s one of few sports that many can continue to enjoy well into their senior years. For those who love to play golf, there are some fantastic charities holding events this summer which offer you additional opportunities to enjoy the sport you love, while also making a difference to others.
One worthwhile annual golf tournament raises funds in support of medical students in Ontario. On June 15th, 2012 The Ontario Medical Student Bursary Fund will be hosting its 8th annual charity golf tournament. This tournament falls under the umbrella of The Ontario Medical Foundation, which is a Canadian charity founded by the Ontario Medical Association. The Ontario Medical Foundation then created the Ontario Medical Bursary Fund to support medical and health related research in Ontario. Bursaries that support medical students in financial need, regardless of their socio economic backgrounds, are greatly needed. In some cases, a bursary from the Ontario Medical Student Bursary Fund has been the lifeline without which a student lacking financial means would not have been able to pursue a career in medicine.
The Ontario Medical Student Bursary Fund golf tournament will take place at the legendary and exclusive Angus Glen Golf Club, home to the 2002 and 2007 Canadian Open. Registration for the tournament is a click away on the Ontario Medical Student Bursary Fund website.
Despite how graceful golf can be, driving balls a hundred yards or more takes power. So does successfully swinging out of the rough. Like any sport, it pays to be in good physical condition as a golfer so that you can enjoy a full 18-hole round and avoid aches and pains that can creep up afterwards. Even the most seasoned golfers have been known to suffer from an injury from time to time. Many golfers are busy people who find it difficult to golf and also make time for the gym. In this case, there are still some things you should make a part of your preparation and conditioning for your regular golf season – or even the occasional game. Walking is a fantastic form of cardio which can increase endurance for golfers. Instead of driving to the store, try taking a power walk. When at work, opt to take the stairs instead of the elevator. Stairs are a free, easy-to-find, 24/7 gym!
Your core – your middle – is the part of the body under the greatest demand when swinging a club. It’s important your core is strong. There are many core strengthening exercises that you can do at home that will improve your own physical fitness and also improve your swing. Yoga is an excellent way to improve core strengthening, as well as offering outstanding flexibility and stress reduction.
Stretching is also very important both before and after golfing. Dynamic stretching works your gluts, hip flexors and lower back to ensure a better physical experience during your golf game.
Dress for success the day of your tournament! Weather can change on a dime some days, so be prepared for anything with a jacket, sunscreen, hat and umbrella. Most importantly, wear proper golf shoes that you have broken in.
Finally and above all else, have fun! Take advantage of the fact that golf is a great stress reliever and a wonderfully fun sport – don’t take your game so seriously that you lose your ability to enjoy your surroundings, the people you’re with and the sheer pleasure that a round of golf offers. Savour and enjoy the special camaraderie that blossoms from a golf tournament dynamic, and if you are attending The Ontario Medical Student Bursary Fund Charity Golf Tournament, know that your support will mean the world to medical students throughout this great province.
If you are coping with a golf injury, or any injury preventing you from being able to golf, contact Athletic Edge Sports Medicine and learn how rehabilitation can help. Call 416-800-0800 or visit www.aesm.ca
Osteoarthritis is a plague to athletes. Wear and tear on joints over time, and the resulting breakdown of joint cartilage means many athletes are prone to it. Sports that are relentlessly demanding on the bodies of athletes, placing enormous stress on their joints, lead to osteoarthritis later in life unless athletes are vigilant about prevention.
That said, osteoarthritis doesn’t only impact athletes. The Arthritis Society of Canada has recently cited osteoarthritis as the most common form of arthritis, affecting 1 in 10 Canadian adults. While osteoarthritis affects people of all ages, it is most common in adults over the age of 60.
What causes this disease?
Aside from wear and tear and overuse, most commonly associated with athletes, joint injury may also occur in motor vehicle accidents or accidents at work or home. Athletes with a history of repeated injuries are also the most likely to develop osteoarthritis as they age. Fractures and infections arising from accidents can harm the internal tissues of a joint. Working with a sports therapy clinic can mitigate risk to athletes through preventative education and programs.
Joint wear and tear that simply occurs over time, which is often evident in the elderly, is also a cause of osteoarthritis. Not all elderly people develop osteoarthritis but many do since prolonged wear and tear isn’t always sports related but involves jobs that involve heavy labour and lifting.
The interesting paradox to osteoarthritis though is that inactivity can be just as harmful to the joints as is overuse and joint wear. This is one of the reasons why osteoarthritis doesn’t only impact athletes. A lack of exercise and inactivity can weaken the muscles that support joints. Over time, a joint that is underused may also become prone to injury, in addition to being sore and dysfunctional.
Furthermore, joints are only nourished when doing activity. The motion of the joint moves joint fluid into and out of the cartilage, keeping it healthy. That’s why activity is so important for joint health and preventing osteoarthritis.
Those carrying excessive body weight are at an increased risk of developing osteoarthritis. When excessive body weight bears down directly on the knees and hips, it causes the kind of joint stress that can lead to osteoarthritis. Diet and nutritional education offered by physiotherapy clinics experienced in treating osteoarthritis can be vital to losing weight and significantly reducing the chances of developing osteoarthritis.
There are people who are aware of, but ignore, the habits and lifestyles that can lead to osteoarthritis. Others will develop it having done absolutely nothing to cause it. Some research suggests that genetic predisposition also plays a significant part in osteoarthritis that is, if your parents had osteoarthritis you may be more likely to develop it than one whose parents didn’t pass down the genes for arthritis.
The only way to prevent osteoarthritis is to heed common causes and preventative measures. These include: exercising regularly, maintaining a healthy body weight, varying your exercise routines, being mindful of any joint pain and exercising vigilance to avoid injuries to your joints. If your job is physically demanding or you’re heavily into sports, invest in your health by working with a sports therapy clinic that can help you to come up with a program to reduce your chances of developing osteoarthritis.
For more information about the causes, prevention and treatment of osteoarthritis please call 416-800-0800 or visit www.aesm.ca