The Most Common Chronic Diseases You Need to Know About

Chronic diseases are now taking over the globe very rapidly, effecting a huge portion of the population worldwide. Chronic diseases are often related to age and an increasing age exerts a higher risk of chronic diseases. There are various chronic diseases which are now found all over the world. Before discussing the diseases, we need to understand the term “ Chronic Diseases”.

What are Chronic Diseases?

Chronic diseases is a term which is used to describe those medical conditions which prolong for more than 6 months. Also, requiring ongoing medical attention. Generally, they result in due to impairment or malfunctioning of certain body organs or cells. The ratio of chronic diseases is significantly high in developed countries owing to multiple underlying factors. On average every 4\10th person is effected from one or multiple chronic diseases.

Common chronic diseases:

  • Diabetes
  • Cardiovascular diseases
  • Hypertension
  • Obesity
  • Hepatic diseases
  • Cancers
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Arthritis
  • Osteoporosis
  • Depression
  • Dementia
  • Alzheimer’s Disorder
  • Kidney diseases
  • Chronic Pulmonary Diseases

What are the Characteristics of Chronic Diseases?

  • Life threatening
  • Prolong medical treatments
  • Complex causes
  • Prolong latency periods

Diabetes type II:

Diabetes type 2 is also known as insulin resistance. This is a condition in which the body fails to utilize insulin which results in higher levels of glucose in blood. This disorder is highly related to age and body weight. Obese people are at a 60% higher risk of diabetes type 2. This disorder is usually common in middle- old age individuals. In U.S 29 million people suffer from diabetes type 2 and 90 million people are prediabetic which means they have more than normal blood glucose level. Diabetes type 2 is also common in obese children teens.

Symptoms of diabetes type 2:

  • Increased thirst
  • Increased hunger
  • Numbness of hands and feet
  • Fatigue
  • Blurry vision
  • Increased urination
  • Weight loss
  • Weakness

Obesity:

Obesity indicates when a person has more than normal body weight. An individual is considered obese when the body mass index ( BMI) is equal to or more than 30kg/m2 than the normal BMI for the certain height and gender. Obesity is now being addressed as globisity. In U.S more than a 100 million people are obese and more than 65% of the population prone to obesity. Obesity is a chronic disease itself and it also serves as a significant underlaying cause for many other chronic diseases like diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, cancers and hypertension etc.

 How to combat obesity on individual level:

Loosing some weight and unhealthy fats from the body would be a very genius act to control obesity at individual level. Try to take no more than 1200- 1500 calories per day for healthy weight loss, depending upon your physical activity. Reduce carb intake and add more raw foods to your diet. Try to be more active through out the day.

Hypertension:

Hypertension is commonly known as high blood pressure. This is a condition in which the blood exerts a higher pressure against the arteries for a prolonged time. Hypertension may also serve as a precursor for stroke, heart diseases and even death. In U.S over a 35 million people suffer from hypertension. This disorder is related to obesity, stress, diet and age. hypertension is also a inherited disease and tends to run through out the families.

Symptoms of hypertension:

  • Headaches
  • Nosebleed
  • Shortness of breath
  • Some people do now show any symptoms even if the blood pressure is high upto life threatening levels.

How to cope with hypertension?

  • Consult a doctor
  • Reduce sodium intake in diet
  • Avoid smoking
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Avoid stress
  • Exercise regularly

Arthritis:

Arthritis is a common condition in which there is inflammation and pain in joints of the body. The joint tissues become inflamed and cause severe pain at the site of inflammation. More than 12 million people in U.S, belonging to different age groups, have arthritis. Arthritis is common among individuals belonging to all age groups, ranging form children to old people. Arthritis has diverse types which include the following:

  • Gout
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Thumb arthritis
  • Reactive Arthritis
  • Septic Arthritis

Symptoms of Arthritis:

  • Pain in joints
  • Stiffness in joints
  • Difficulty In motion
  • Redness of joints
  • Swellings of joints

Osteoporosis:

Osteoporosis is a chronic disease of bones in which the bones become too soft and brittle due to increased demineralization of bones or due to decreased mineral absorption into the bones. In this condition there is a massive bone loss which makes joints and bones very stiff, soft and hinder the mobility of bones. Osteoporosis makes bones so prone to fractures that even a small jerk or mare bending over might cause fractures. Osteoporosis mainly effects waist, hip and spine.

Osteoporosis effects both male and female population, however, it is more common among women who have reached menopause.

Symptoms of Osteoporosis:

  • Pain in joints and bones
  • Frequent fractures
  • Decrease in height
  • Stooped posture

How to Treat osteoporosis:

Osteoporosis is a serious medical condition and should be treated with proper medical assistance.

Depression:

Depression is a prevailing chronic disease of this modern society. Most of the time depression is confused with anxiety. Depression is a state of mind which causes anxiety, change in behavior, eating disorder, suicidal thoughts and loss of internets or pleasures. Depression no only affects the social and personal life of a person but It also aggravates some medical conditions. Each year in U.S, there are 200- 400 suicides due to depression.

Symptoms of Depression:

  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Loss of interests
  • Anger
  • Guilt
  • Feeling sad, hopeless
  • Digestive problems
  • Headaches
  • Feeling empty
  • Changes in mood
  • Changed behavior
  • Inability to perform tasks
  • Anxiousness and restlessness
  • Changes in sleep patterns
  • Changes in appetite

Cardiovascular diseases

Chronic diseases which are related to heart and blood vessels are collectively known as cardiovascular diseases. These diseases are usually triggered by obesity, stress, high level of cholesterol and old age.

In U.S almost 45- 60 % of the population is prone to cardiovascular diseases. Cardiovascular diseases include medical conditions like heart failure, arrythmia, stroke, and heart attack.

Atherosclerosis:

Atherosclerosis is a medical condition win which there are fat deposits in the blood vessels which supply blood to the heart. this leads to deceased blood supply to the heart and ultimately causes congestive heart failure which could be fetal.  Atherosclerosis is the leading cause of cardiovascular diseases globally. And it is treated as a medical emergency.

What causes atherosclerosis?

Here are a few reasons for atherosclerosis

  • High cholesterol intake
  • High sodium intake
  • Obesity
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Consuming fatty foods
  • Excess of junk food

 Symptoms of Cardiovascular diseases:

  • Angina
  • Chest pain
  • Chest tightness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain in throat, jaw, upper abdomen, arms and back
  • Pain and numbness in legs and arms

How You can avoid chronic diseases?

Here are a few simple and easy lifestyle changes which you can adopt of reduce the risk of chronic heart diseases

  • Take balance diet as balance diet is the key to healthy lifestyle
  • Maintain normal body weight
  • Take regular checkups
  • Take a daily stroll
  • Do regular exercise
  • Take 8 hour sleep
  • Avoid junk foods, caffeine, alcohol and smoking

Consult your nearby physician if you notice any symptoms to seek appropriate medical guidance and care in time.