Arthritis occurs when one or more of your joints begins experiencing inflammation and pain. While there is no cure for arthritis, there are many treatment options. It helps to start treating it early, which can be done if you look out for the common arthritis warning signs. Here are some signs you should not ignore.
Stiffness of the Joint
The first common warning sign that you have arthritis is having stiffness of the joint. You probably know pain and tenderness of the joints is a sign of arthritis, but don't forget those joints will also experience stiffness. This is actually one of the first things you might notice, even before the pain begins.
Joint stiffness typically occurs after you have been inactive for a while, such as standing up after you have been sitting for several hours, or when you get out of bed in the morning. You may have problems moving the joint and lack of range-of-motion in the joint until you start working it out and stretching it.
Redness Around the joint
If you think you have arthritis, take a good look at the joint. Do you notice redness or discoloration? If so, this can be a warning sign that you have this condition. The redness is caused by the inflammation in the joint spreading, which can show up on your skin. It is also more common when the arthritis is associated with infection or with rheumatoid arthritis. Don't assume redness around a joint is minor; it is still a good reason to call your doctor.
Joints That Feel Warm to the Touch
If you were rubbing your knee joint because it was a little sore and stiff, and it felt warm to the touch, this is a warning sign that you might have arthritis. Warmth of a joint is often accompanied by swelling, pain, and redness, but it might be the only thing you notice. If there is no other reason for this particular joint to feel warmer than the rest of your body, you should see your doctor and get examined for possible arthritis.
You Have a Fever
This is a warning sign that is usually combined with others, such as having redness and warmth of a joint, plus a fever. A fever alone is probably not going to convince you to see your doctor for arthritis, but if you have a fever in addition to pain or inflammation of one of your joints, definitely see a doctor. Your body is trying to respond to the development of arthritis, which might also be an infection related to the condition. Your temperature will go up as your body responds to it, so this is a sign that you shouldn't ignore.
If you have any of these arthritis warning signs, make an appointment with your doctor, like Ascar Egtedar, MD. There are a variety of treatment options, from getting custom orthopedic inserts to possible surgical procedures.