Impact of Arthritis on Growing Elderly Population

Monday, 14th May 2012

Published 14 May 2012.

Arthritis means inflammation of the joints and typically causes people to experience pain and difficulty in moving around. There are approximately 10 million people in the UK with arthritis today and this number is expected to rise as the number of elderly people increases.

There are over 200 rheumatic diseases (i.e. those which cause aches and pains in joints, bones and muscles) and the two most common forms are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. A recent report by the charity Arthritis Care has indicated that Britain is facing a “tsunami of pain” as osteoarthritis cases are set to double from 8.5 million to 17 million by 2030. This is driven by the projected increases in the two key risk factors associated with developing the disease – being overweight and over 50 years of age.

With 71% of osteoarthritis sufferers experiencing some form of constant pain and 1 in 8 saying their pain is often “unbearable”, there are wide ranging physical, emotional and financial impacts of osteoarthritis. However, with good support and communication with their health professional there is a lot that can be done minimise the impact of the disease on an elderly person and enable them to continue to enjoy a good quality of life.

Small changes to an elderly person’s lifestyle that can help to manage the symptoms of arthritis may include using equipment and adaptations in the home, undertaking therapeutic exercises or protecting joints when carrying out everyday tasks such as dressing.

Arthritis Care Week will be celebrated between 14-20 May 2012 and is aimed at raising awareness of the disease.

About Carefound:

Carefound is a provider of specialist home care and dementia care services to elderly people in North Yorkshire, enabling clients to continue to live independently in the comfort of their own home whilst maintaining the highest quality of life achievable. Services provided include basic help in the home,companionship, personal care, medication help, post-operative rehabilitation, respite care and specialist help such as dementia care and palliative care. The flexible service ranges from 1 hour to 24 hours per day, 7 days a week, including bank holidays, and can also encompass 24-hour live-in care services. For more information please telephone 01423 774070 or visit www.carefound.co.uk.

Source: Arthritis Care, Carefound.