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Why Do Some Get Arthritis, and Others Don't?

May 09, 2023
Why Do Some Get Arthritis, and Others Don't?
Many factors play a role in the development of arthritis, causing some people to get the condition while others remain unaffected. Read on to gain a better understanding of arthritis and what contributes to its development.

Arthritis is a joint condition that causes pain, inflammation, and reduced mobility. Despite its widespread reach globally, not everyone develops arthritis, which might lead you to wonder why some people get it and others don't. 

At Liberty Pain Associates in Flower Mound, Alliance/Keller, and Fort Worth, Texas, Sathya Bhandari, MD, and our team are passionate about understanding and treating arthritis. We provide compassionate, evidence-based care for anyone living with arthritis.

In this post, we dive into the factors that influence the development of arthritis and the latest research that aims to unravel this medical puzzle.

Causes and risk factors of arthritis 

A combination of factors determines whether a person is likely to develop arthritis. Some of the most crucial to consider include the following:


One of the critical factors in determining whether someone will develop arthritis is genetics. Multiple studies have shown that specific genes increase the risk of developing different types of arthritis. 

For instance, carrying the HLA-DRB1 gene increases your risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis. Despite these genetic predispositions, it is vital to remember that not everyone with these genes will develop arthritis.

Environmental factors

While genetics play a significant role, environmental factors also contribute to the development of arthritis. Some of them include:

Age: As you age, the risk of developing arthritis increases due to the wear-and-tear of your joints and the gradual loss of cartilage.

Injuries: Joint injuries can cause post-traumatic arthritis. This occurs when an injury damages your joint's cartilage, causing it to wear out more quickly.

Infections: In some cases, bacterial or viral infections can trigger inflammatory arthritis.

Occupation: If you have a job that requires repetitive movements, heavy lifting, or prolonged standing, you are at an increased risk of arthritis.

If you are genetically predisposed to arthritis, exposure to these environmental factors will heighten your risk. 

Lifestyle choices

The lifestyle choices you make can also impact your susceptibility to arthritis. For instance, being overweight stresses your weight-bearing joints, such as your hips, knees, and spine. 

This can quicken the wear-and-tear process, increasing your risk of developing osteoarthritis.

A diet high in inflammatory foods, such as processed foods, sugar, and saturated fats, can also increase your risk of arthritis. Conversely, a diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats, can help reduce inflammation and protect you against arthritis.

A complicated combination of genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors influences the development of arthritis. Understanding this complexity can help you better manage and prevent the condition. 

Researchers are working tirelessly to identify the specific genetic markers and environmental triggers that contribute to arthritis risk, as well as developing new treatments to treat the condition.

While you may not have complete control over some of the factors that cause arthritis, understanding their role in its development can help you make informed choices to reduce your risk and manage the condition more effectively. 

At Liberty Pain Associates, we're committed to helping our patients navigate the complexity of arthritis and live healthier, more comfortable lives. Book an appointment with us today online or call 972-355-9038.