Arthritis Support Products

It has been estimated that around 10 million people live with some form of arthritis in the UK. The condition is one of the most common disabilities in the country and can affect people of all ages. Arthritis can be caused by genetics, ageing, injury, infections and lifestyle, amongst other things. It can affect various parts of the body, including the fingers, wrists, shoulders, spine, knees and ankles. Arthritis support products can often help ease pain and other symptoms.

What is arthritis?

Arthritis is inflammation in one or more joints that causes pain and stiffness when a person moves, or sits still for a prolonged period. There are various forms of arthritis, including:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis: immune system attacks the joints, leading to swelling and pain
  • Osteoarthritis: often found in older people; injuries cause build-up of fluid at the joints, leading to swelling and thinning of the cartilage
  • Gout: too much uric acid in the blood leads to uric crystals forming near the joint. Attacks can be rare or frequent (eventually resulting in joint damage) and extremely painful
  • Juvenile idiopathic arthritis: occurs in people aged 16 or under. Can improve as the child gets older
  • Reactive arthritis: triggered by infection, often in the bowel, genital tract or throat

What are some symptoms of arthritis?

While symptoms can vary for each different person affected by arthritis, some of the more common ones include:

  • Tender or painful joints
  • Inflammation and swelling around joints
  • Restricted movement around affected joints
  • Hot, red skin around affected areas
  • Muscle weakness

How can it be treated?

There is no cure for arthritis, but it can be managed effectively in a number of ways. These include medication, lifestyle changes (including diet and weight management), physiotherapy and surgery. One especially effective way to manage the condition is through the use of arthritis support products. These range from daily living and mobility aids to wearable supports and products that offer medication-free pain relief.

Daily living aids can include walkers and canes to help you move around, as well as folding versions for easy travel. You can also get heated pads and adjustable chairs and foot rests for comfortable sitting. Other aids also include orthopaedic heated pads and insoles for instant relief. Some other devices help you get dressed and washed and to cook for yourself. Finally, pedal exercisers and weight cuffs can help people wanting to continue exercising to alleviate symptoms.

The lowdown on wearable arthritis support products

Other arthritis support products help you continue with gentle exercise. However, a key area to investigate is the range of arthritis support products specially designed for maximum comfort and mobility help.

  • Socks

There are various types of specialist support socks available. These range from ankle compression socks to help boost blood circulation and reduce arthritis pain to flight socks designed for air and long-distance travel. These can also assist people living with diabetes and can help prevent emboli and DVD from occurring.

  • Stockings

Additional support for the ankles, keens and legs is available in the form of compression stockings. These help people living with arthritis in the toes, ankles and knees, because they offer a wider area of support and assistance with walking and caring for the lower extremities.

  • Gloves

We often forget to look after our fingers, hands and wrists until they start to become inflamed or painful. This can be a particular problem in the winter with colder temperatures. Choosing copper or heated gloves can go a long way to ease pain. You can also get specialist arthritis gloves, designed to offer therapeutic compression and support for fingers, thumbs and wrists. Also effective for carpal tunnel and Raynaud’s disease

  • Back support belt and braces

Arthritis in the back can make moving excruciatingly painful, if not impossible. A discreet, effective back brace or belt can make a huge difference. It goes under your clothe and offers essential support to manage any inflammation or swelling.

  • Knee, elbow or shoulder braces and supports

Just like the back brace above, there are specially designed support products for the different joints, including elbows, shoulders, knees and legs. In fact, you can get professional arthritis support products for pretty much any part of the body that can be affected by the painful and inflammatory condition.