The lymphatic system is a critical part of the immune system that is responsible for regulating fluid levels in your body. Through this functionality, it not only drains excess fluid from your cells, but also safeguards your tissues, vessels, and organs from infections and diseases.
But if your lymphatic system gets damaged for any reason, it can lead to a variety of ongoing problems and diseases. One of these conditions is called lymphedema, which causes your tissues to swell and opens doors to a world of health problems.
If you or a loved one is facing this challenge, it is important that you understand its related symptoms as well as diagnosis and treatment options. To help you grasp this information, here are 5 things to know about lymphedema.
1. It Causes More Than Just Swelling
The term “edema” refers to swelling, specifically when it’s caused by excess fluid between your tissues. However, swelling is only one symptom of lymphedema, and may not even be related to the condition in every case. Swelling can be a sign that you need emergency dental care or general healthcare due to a separate condition.
Once you learn more about what is lymphedema and what kind of issues it causes, it becomes clear that the condition relates to more than simple swelling. If left untreated, it can also create issues such as heaviness and tightness in the affected area. This, in turn, can lead to problems including limited mobility, hardened skin, and repeated infections.
2. It Can Happen in Multiple Areas
Whether you spend all day at your desk or use a running app to get your exercise, your mobility is one of the most important things to your physical and mental wellbeing. That is why it’s crucial to learn that if you have lymphedema, you run a high chance of feeling swelling and related symptoms within your arms and legs.
This swelling can be both outwardly visible and inwardly harmful. It can also extend to your hands and feet, including your fingers and toes. Once this swelling grows to a significant degree, it can lead to the symptoms mentioned above that comprise limited motion and hardened skin.
3. It Has Multiple Risk Factors
There are multiple risk factors that increase your chance of developing lymphedema. These include but are not limited to aging, arthritis, and obesity. While reversing the former two risk factors is not possible, you should analyze if your job is putting your health at risk by limiting your activity and causing you to gain weight.
Looking at these risk factors and possible lifestyle changes can help you manage the onset of the disease. For instance, looking into solutions such as a power treadmill desk can resolve your issue of inactivity throughout the day and contribute to your overall health.
4. It Can Cause Different Complications
In addition to the multiple symptoms that are caused by lymphedema, the disease brings about different types of complications with it. These risks may include sepsis, blisters, recurrent skin infections, and cancer. These complications mostly arise in cases where lymphedema is left untreated. Due to this reason, it is important to seek treatment at the first sign of trouble.
By learning how to find the best medical professionals in your area, you can fulfill this requirement with ease. This allows you to obtain proper treatment before the issue grows out of hand, and enables you to live a fulfilling life even with the development of the disease.
5. It Has Ongoing Treatment Options
Once your lymphedema is diagnosed through physical and radiology tests, you have a variety of treatment options at your disposal. It is crucial to remember that there is no set cure for lymphedema. This means that the treatment centers around controlling the swelling as well as the other symptoms that are related to it.
In addition to pneumatic wearables, these approaches also include exercise, dietary changes, manual drainage, and compression garments. Considering solutions such as a swimming app, meal delivery service, and wearable system can allow you to easily embrace these changes. This leads you towards enjoying a healthier lifestyle that is not largely restricted by lymphedema.
After learning these key points about lymphedema, you can have an idea of what to expect with the condition. This ensures that you can discuss your specific options with a qualified healthcare provider and get the peace of mind and high quality treatment that you deserve.