I want to kick off a brand new year with some startling statistics, but more importantly, some hope for you if you have been dealing with joint pain.
Let’s make 2016 a better year for you….and your joints.
And now the stats:
- By the year 2030, more than 67 million adults (or greater than 25% of the U.S. population) will be diagnosed with osteoarthritis.
- In a 2014 study published in the Annals of Rheumatic Diseases, compiling data from more than 147 studies conducted in 47 countries, back pain is the leading cause of disability worldwide.
- In the U.S. however, osteoarthritis is now the leading cause of disability, surpassing disability from heart disease or stroke.
- With the expanding number of overweight or obese adults (more than 1/3 of the population), and children (also more than 1 in 3, ages 2-19) in the U.S., these numbers are conservative estimates, likely to be even worse than predicted over the coming 15 years.
Osteoarthritis has incorrectly been labeled a “wear and tear” disease, a byproduct of aging, or otherwise an ailment that everyone will experience to varying degrees as they age.
However, with advancements in science we now have a much deeper understanding of the underlying biology of joints, and more importantly, the biology of the multiple systems within your body that may be contributing factors to aging and degeneration if not functioning at their best.
The beneficiary of these scientific advancements is you.
We are now moving forward into an era of medicine that will allow you to take firm control of the contributing factors to joint aging and degeneration. You will be able to more thoroughly evaluate every system in your body in order to individualize a prevention or treatment plan customized for you. Through this approach, we will be talking about how you can accelerate the natural repair and regeneration of your joints.
Think about a time when your joints didn’t hurt? Or, if your joints currently do not cause you pain, can you imagine not experiencing the joint pain known by your parents, spouse, friends or co-workers?
Is it possible to turn block the clock to a time when your joints did not ache? Is it possible to reverse the damage done, decrease pain, and restore lost function?
Is it possible to put a prevention plan in place now to maintain the health of your joints for a lifetime, and possibly never experience joint pain, lost function, or a joint replacement surgery?
I firmly believe the answer to these questions is yes, as that is what I do with patients each day in my practice.
To understand how this will be accomplished, I must get you up to speed on the science behind the advancements in treatment:
- Genetics – the underlying genes that code the likelihood that you may develop a particular disease, or have a particular health problem.
- Epigenetics – How the unique environment in and around your body influences the expression of your genes – and in turn, what you will become
- Biochemical individuality – The individual cells, tissues, and organ systems that comprise your body, and how they are dependent on nutrition and other factors in your environment for optimal function, longevity, and vitality.
All of these factors contribute to the finely tuned orchestration and interplay of systems within your body responsible for maintaining your overall health, and specifically what we are talking about – the health of your joints.
If we are to move forward from this point continuing to think of joint pain and osteoarthritis as a singular “disease of wear and tear”, than we are to ignore the science and uniqueness of your body.
To call this problem a “disease of aging” is over simplistic. To continue to “treat” the problems of pain and functional limitations with tools such as anti-inflammatory medications and joint replacement surgery is to apply a generic “solution” to a completely individual situation.
The current healthcare system, as it relates to the problems I see in my office every day, attempts to treat your problems largely with symptom management. In doing so it ignores the systems, genetics, and epigenetics explained above – the true underlying cause of the problem – in favor of quickly “treating”, or really masking, symptoms. The system has been called by many a “pill for every ill” model, and the people stuck in that model – you – are getting sicker by the day.
That methodology of treatment is without regard for you, the unique individual.
It does not explain the biology of why your joints may fail.
It does not educate you how to prevent your joints from failing.
It does not often detail what specifically you can do to treat more than the symptoms, or to prevent needing surgery.
As you will learn, the development of painful, degenerative joint pain and osteoarthritis has much more to do with how you age.
Specifically, it will be greatly impacted by the overall health of your body, the internal and external environment you create and maintain in and around your body, and your ability to build the appropriate maintenance plan.
Do not be frustrated with the current healthcare system if it has been unable to deliver the solution for you. It is not your fault, and it is not entirely the fault of the healthcare system built over the past several decades. It is not designed in a way (yet) to deliver the individualized care you require to restore your health, or prevent other problems as you age.
While you and I may not have the ability to change (yet) the current healthcare system, you absolutely have the ability to change YOUR healthcare and travel down a different path.
If you currently have joint pain and are looking for a better treatment, or wishing to create an ideal maintenance plan to prevent experiencing joint pain in the future – you have come to the right place.
That is our focus at Rejuv Medical Southwest.
Committed to a better way to treat and prevent your joint pain,
P.S. How old are your joints? The results may show you. Take the quiz by clicking here