How to Treat and Prevent Sports Injuries and Secondary Arthritis

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For anyone involved in sports activities, injuries are a way of life. It doesn’t matter if you engage in these activities professionally or for recreation, you are at risk all the time.

When you discuss “injuries”, most of you are thinking about the common broken bone and sprained ankle. However, there is a more insidious kind of injury that can leave you with debilitating pain for the rest of your life.

When arthritis develops as a result of injuries, it is generally referred to as “secondary” osteoarthritis. That means the deterioration of the cartilage was caused by a traumatic injury to begin with. As a general rule, it takes years after the injury to develop.

There are 147 joints in the human body and each one of them has cartilage that protects the bones from coming into contact with one another. It is the degradation of this cartilage that leads people into a lifetime of debilitating pain from arthritis.

What can you do to prevent or treat this?

There is, however, something you can do now that will protect your joints and cartilage and end any pain you may currently be experiencing. Using liquid glucosamine and chondroitin your pain can be brought to a halt very quickly. With the recently released clinical studies indicating the power of these ingredients, the market is literally flooded with competing products. So how do you select the product that is right glucosamine for you?

As a general rule, the lower the grade of the product the less pain relief you will get. Using medium grade products, it will take 5-6 months for you to see relief. The same is true for the process of rehabilitating cartilage. On the other hand, a high-quality product will usually end your pain in 10-25 days, depending on the extent of your disease. As well, the healing and rehabilitation process begins nearly immediately. When choosing among glucosamine products a pharmaceutical grade liquid formula in liquid form will bring the maximum relief and protection. In addition, a high quality liquid glucosamine formula will do wonders for those recovering from orthopedic surgery.

Given the availability of glucosamine without prescription, the smart athlete is already taking a formula as a preventive measure. With its low cost, it’s a smart move both for the short term and the long one. After all, there is no sense in paying the physical price for doing the things we enjoy doing.

For all athletes and anyone suffering from secondary arthritis, I would highly suggest learning more about Syn-flex, a pharmaceutical grade liquid glucosamine formula.

Reprinted with permission from The Glucosamine Foundation.

Neck Pain

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Developing a Program That’s Right for You
Information is readily available on the way to stop neck pain. The challenge is to tailor it to the particular patient. For example, it’s said that using certain kinds of pillows are best for the neck. But which kind? And does the information apply to every kind of neck pain?

Using the telephone improperly is also said to create problems in the neck. But what is the proper way to use a phone? And if a brace or special piece of equipment is necessary, which is the right one? The list goes on: cold or hot applications, rest or activity?

What Kinds of Problems Might Cause Neck Pain?
Treatment for any neck condition is recommended as soon as possible to minimize the danger of further aggravation. The following is a list of only some of the conditions that may cause neck pain is not a substitute for a visit to your doctor:

  • Radiculopathy: A pinched nerve, often from a herniated, or slipped disk. This causes pain down the arm that’s often described as an electrical feeling.
  • Myofascial Pain: Generally an aching pain in muscles that tends to be associated with poor posture, sitting at a computer or other job-related tasks. Patients can become sore in different parts of the body like the neck and arms, and often patients report they have difficulty sleeping or feeling restored from sleep.
  • Spinal Stenosis: A narrowing of the nerve openings either around the spinal cord or nerve roots that can cause symptoms similar to a pinched nerve. The pain is described either as an aching or an electrical feeling down the arm.
  • Tendon, Ligament and Soft Tissue Pain: Localized pain when an area is stretched or its muscles are overused. This results in tenderness.
  • Spinal Instability: Increased motion between vertebra, usually resulting from an injury. The pain typically feels like tingling in the neck or arms.
  • Non-Spinal Causes of Neck Pain: Pain imitating a neck injury, but from another cause. Shoulder and elbow injuries and gall bladder disease are examples of problems that can refer pain to the neck area.
  • Repetitive Strain Injury: An injury that occurs from a chronically used part of the body, either in a normal or abnormal way. These problems are often found in people who sit at desks or work at computers.

Treatment Options
The rehabilitation of neck injuries occurs in three phases. During the first phase, called the acute phase, physiatrists treat pain the inflammation. After they make a specific diagnosis and develop a treatment plan, physiatrists may offer treatment options like ultrasound, electrical stimulation, mobilization, medication, ice and even specialized injections.

In the second, or recovery, phase of treatment, flexibility and strength are developed to get the body parts into their proper positions. The goal of this phase is to get you back to your usual work, sports and leisure activities. This goal is achieved through specially designed exercises that rebuild the body.

The main goal of the third phase of treatment, the maintenance phase, is to minimize recurrence of the problem and to prevent further injury. This often consists of a total body fitness program, designed to maintain body mechanics and increase endurance after the original symptoms have resolved.

These are very broad and general approaches to the treatment of neck pain. The physiatrist that you choose will develop an individual treatment plan for you.

 

Beating Arthritis

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INGREDIENTS FOR SUCCESSFULLY BEATING ARTHRITIS PAIN: Omega 3 and Omega 6

Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids are known and understood to be essential fats since they are generally obtained by ingesting foods. (As opposed to “processed” or saturated fats.) What is important for you to understand is that your body needs Omega 3 and 6.

So what does that mean to those who suffer from osteoarthritis? Your body converts saturated fats into PG2, which has an inflammatory effect on your body. On the other hand, both Omega 3 (PG3) and Omega 6 (PG1) have an anti-inflammatory effect on your body. By now you should all be aware that part of your pain problems associated with osteoarthritis results from inflammation.

An interesting observation was made in some clinical studies in the mid-1990’s that is noted in Dr. Atkins’ Diet Revolution. (Avon books) The doctor suggests that a principal ingredient in the fight against all arthritis should be Omega-3 fatty acids. And why is that? Because this essential acid clearly demonstrates that Omega-3 relieves both pain and inflammation.

What may be most interesting about Dr. Atkin’s recommendation is that clinical studies have confirmed that the use of Omega-3 standing alone dramatically reduced the pain suffered by those with Rheumatoid Arthritis allowing them to lessen their dependence on other drugs.

This leads us full circle back to some of the other methods of successfully beating arthritis pain. Namely, that diet in general also plays a significant role in the overall picture. If we eat less saturated fats, we are in effect taking away one of our body’s means of producing inflammation. Conversely, by increasing our intake of Omega-3 and Omega-6 we are assisting and encouraging our body to produce anti-inflammatory defense mechanisms.

Are there any other benefits that we might gain through he use of Omega-3 and Omega-6? The answer is clearly “yes.”

Arteriosclerosis is cited as the greatest factor in deaths in this country today. (Thickening in the lining of artery walls, which lead to heart disease.) The ingestion of Omega-3 and Omega-6 therefore benefits our bodies in still one more way. We actually reduce the risk of developing heart disease and suffering cardiac arrest.

Reprinted with permission from The Glucosamine Foundation.