The term "arthritis" refers to an inflammation of a joint. Arthritis can reduce strength and mobility for performing even the most routine of chores around work or home. It is one of the most common disabling conditions, but can be managed through diet, exercise, education, and care.
Arthritis affects approximately one-third of all adult farm and ranch operators and is considered one of the leading causes of disability by customers of the USDA AgrAbility Project. With the average age of the American farmer climbing above 57, increasingly more farmers will find tasks difficult to complete. Many agricultural workers do not know they may be at risk of developing arthritis.
At some point, an assistive device may be be needed to maneuver around the farm or to complete a task. Walking devices such as canes or hand rails, all-terrain vehicles, and modified pathways can make traveling around the farm less painful. Longer handles and padded grips can be added to tools. There are many specialized assistive devices that can be utilized depending on the severity of the arthritis and the types of jobs needed to be done.
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