Once damaged, the cartilage will not grow back. But you can still protect the cartilage you still have and achieve good quality of life.
The cartilage on our joints will start to wear down as we age. As our age progresses, the tissue that covers and pads our joints to make sure that we move easily will start to beak down like the rubber tires on a car. When there’s little to no cartilage left, the bone joints will then grind against each other making normal movements seem agonizing. This condition is called osteoarthritis.
Once damaged, the cartilage will not grow back. As of now, certain types of arthritis (such as osteoarthritis) cannot be reversed once it has started. Degenerated cartilage can’t heal or grow back. But you can still protect the cartilage you still have and achieve good quality of life.
Here are some ways:
Lose weight – To help ease the pressure on your hips and knees. Every kilogram off removes excess stress that can potentially hurt your joints and this will lessen the wear and tear on your joints and slow down the onset of arthritis.
Do aerobics — Research shows that pain and stiffness get worse when you aren’t active enough. Regular exercise that gets your heart pumping will boost your blood flow — to keep cartilage well nourished.
Protect your joints with muscle – Build stronger muscles around your joints. This can help your body absorb some of the shock that normally goes through your joint when you move around during the day.
Build up the muscles that surround your joint. For example, strengthen the quadriceps muscles, to help strengthen your knee.
Stretch – Get going if you want to improve your ability to move your joints. This helps protect the cartilage from more wear and tear and also fights stiffness.
Consider supplements – Supplements like glucosamine, chondroitin and collagen have been shown to offer some benefit when it comes to protecting your cartilage. There’s no proof that these will slow down your arthritis. Some studies suggest they can ease your pain.
Address the pain – Take over-the-counter medication to help ease your pain. OTC painkillers may be a good choice for providing short-term relief. Always check with your physician to decide which one is safe for you. Make sure to take them only as directed.