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Arthritis of The Shoulder
Arthritis is a common problem as we grow older and results from wear and tear or degeneration of the cartilage which can then lead to the area becoming enlarged, developing bony projections and make it difficult to move. Arthritis of the shoulder, and in particular acromioclavicular joint arthritis (ACJ is the small joint in the shoulder) can cause severe shoulder pain but this can also be prevented and managed.
ACJ arthritis is a common problem after middle age. This type of shoulder arthritis develops as a result of repetitive over-use of the shoulder or from a previous ACJ injury. People who constantly have to reach over head for extended periods are also more susceptible to ACJ arthritis. Athletes or those in danger of falling on their shoulder or having blunt force applied to it also experience a higher risk of ACJ arthritis.
Why Arthritis Causes Shoulder Pain
When you have shoulder arthritis the body produces bony extensions or osteophytes on the shoulder where the body lays down bone to protect the constant rubbing of the bone. When you try to move this joint you will experience pain. These osteophytes may also add pressure to nerves around the shoulder which also produces pain.
Another reason why arthritis causes shoulder pain is due to the inflammation and loss of cartilage. One of the symptoms of shoulder arthritis is that the cartilage degenerates and so is no longer able to absorb the shocks it once was and repair itself. When the shoulder joint becomes inflamed this also leads to more pain.
Prevent Shoulder Arthritis
There are a number of steps that you can take to help prevent shoulder arthritis. The first is simply to take care of your shoulder and try to prevent injury to it through excessive overhead use or falling accidents. If you have any injuries to the shoulder then also ensure that they are properly treated.
Take note of the way you move and any activities that cause repetitive stress to your shoulder. If you do notice any pain from repetitive activity then get help immediately and try to avoid over-working the area.
Get exercise and physical activity but do not abuse your body. Weak muscles increase the risk of developing arthritis, whereas regularly exercising and ensure that you have strong and flexible shoulders can help to avoid arthritis. Further information about exercises for shoulder arthritis see Exercise for Shoulder Pain Arthritis .
Certain vitamins and supplements may also help with the prevention and treatment of early arthritis. Glucosamine Sulphate, for example, is able to help preserve the cartilage and omega supplements are good for inflammation and arthritis.
Arthritis is a common problem in those over middle age and can be caused by normal wear and tear on the shoulder over time as well as from excessive pressure or injury. In order to avoid shoulder arthritis you should take general care of your shoulder, avoid excessive overhead work and take vitamins and supplements.