What is arthritis?
To understand how arthritis gloves work, it is first pivotal to understand what arthritis is and how it affects various portions of the population. Arthritis is actually a blanket term for more than 1,000 types of joint pain and disorders that affect various areas of the body. Nearly 50 million American adults are affected by some form of arthritis and it is the leading cause of disability in the United States.
Arthritis symptoms can vary greatly from person to person, and some can stay the same for years before becoming progressively worse over time. The most common symptoms associated with arthritis include various forms of chronic pain, including decreased range of motion, swelling, stiffness and pain when performing day-to-day activities. The most common forms of arthritis include:
- Osteoarthritis: This form of arthritis is the most common form of the disease and typically affects the joints that bear weight, including the knees, hips, feet and spine. Osteoarthritis arises from the breakdown of cartilage that comes from the wear and tear of joints that eliminates the cushioning of the joint. This can result in chronic pain, inflammation and stiffness.
- Rheumatoid Arthritis: As opposed to osteoarthritis that is caused by aging, rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that attacks specific parts of the body, predominantly the joints. Inflammation is a hallmark of rheumatoid arthritis, as joint stiffness, as well as swelling in the hands, wrists, knees, neck, feet, ankles and other body parts, are symptoms that must be managed with the condition.
- Psoriatic Arthritis: Some individuals who have psoriasis can develop psoriatic arthritis over time, even before the skin condition's symptoms appear. Psoriatic arthritis symptoms include joint pain, stiffness and swelling, and while these symptoms can affect nearly any part of the body, it is notable for its ability to afflict the fingertips and spine.
How do arthritis gloves treat arthritis symptoms?
Arthritic symptoms in the hands are fairly common, which can dramatically affect an individual's ability to perform everyday tasks. The aches, pains, stiffness and inflammation that arise from arthritis can be treated with compression therapy, and arthritis gloves are one such treatment for pain and discomfort in the hands. Arthritis gloves provide mild compression to improve circulation, as well as retaining body heat to provide soothing warmth to the affected area. By providing cushioning for aching joints and continual therapy throughout the day, arthritis gloves can be extremely effective for individuals looking to alleviate pain and better manage their symptoms.