Category Archives: Arthritis

My arthritis journey continues with Arthritis 101

I have begun a health education journey. The topics that interest me in this journey are: alzheimers, arthritis, caregiving, nutrition and health and fitness. As I research these topics in the hopes of helping myself, my husband, and my family and friends I am discovering how important it is for individuals to take charge of their health and to become the managers of their health care.

Today I want to begin sharing information that I am learning about arthritis. I know that some of the best ways to learn are: teach others, reflect on your learning, write about what you learn, reformat what you learn in new words, new pictures, new forms, and discuss your learning. I am going to share some of these learning experiences and practices with you.

In Alberta, we have the Arthritis Society, and they are offering a two hour session called Arthritis 101. This can be followed up with other programs that they offer. Check in your area to see what is available to you.

Arthritis means inflammation of the joints – “arthro” meaning joint and “itis” meaning inflammation. (The next time I feel like my head is about to explode I will call it ‘headitis’ or ‘brainitis”:)

Arthritis has caused me pain, stillfness, swelling and as I discovered in my last two doctor’s appointments, irreversible joint damage. Today I found out that this is normal; that there are 100 different conditions that affect joints and connective tissue; and that arthritis covers a range of conditions from tendinitis, to bursitis, to gout, to rheumatoid arthritis and osteoartritis. The most astonishing thing I learned was that arthritis costs $6.4 billion in labour market and healthcare annually.

The other, for me, revealing and important thing I noted, as I listened to the presentation, was that there were early signs that would have helped me if I had known what I learned today.

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