Hypermobility Syndrome or Joint Hypermobility can be defined by the NHS as:
“some or all of a person’s joints have an unusually large range of movement. People with hypermobility are particularly supple and able to move their limbs into positions others find impossible. Joint hypermobility is what some people refer to as having ‘loose joints’ or being ‘double-jointed’. “
If you have been following my ‘Living With..‘ series you will be aware that I have mentioned this several times, so I thought I would finally go into it a bit.
Like it mentions above, this disease means that basically sufferers are able to bend more than others for their joints allow them to. Now, for people who do gymnastics, ballet or play an instrument this could be useful, the extra flexibility may aid them! For other people it’s the ‘cool’ double jointed side of things like touching your nose with your tongue, bending fingers back to your forearms and bending your arms and legs in weird, inhuman positions. However for others, this extra flexibility can lead to:
– recurrent injuries such as sprains or muscle tearing.
– constant clicking joints.
– dislocating joints due to the extra movement.
– stiffness & pain in the muscles and joints.
Now, it is believed that this disease is hereditary and caused by changes to a certain protein called Collagen. Collagens are found throughout the body and is basically a connective tissue that connects two bones to a joint. So if this tissue is weak, making it loose and stretchy this is what makes the joint able to move around more than they are meant to. This causes strain on the muscle and BING, BANG, BOOM – pain and injury.
As a sufferer.
As a sufferer of this, you can probably guess that I didn’t get the good end of the deal like those who benefit from it in ballet or something! And again, mine affects me slightly differently because I have another disease which counter acts my JHS in a way.
So where as my JHS makes my joints able to bend further, my other disease is that my muscles are too small for my skeleton, so the majority of the time they are already quite tense and unable to tense or be stretched much further. Meaning that when I bend past the bodies ‘normal’ capability (thanks to the JHS) my muscles/ligaments tear. Along with this the JHS affects my RPD for the extra movement aids in the dislocations, as well as my Arthritis with regards to pain, stiffness and the tension on my joints due to the extra flexibility.
As per usual, a bit of a pain in the ass really. I mean on the plus side I can touch my nose with my tongue and bend my fingers and arms in weird positions (to an extent). It doesn’t quite have the same affect on my legs as that’s where the muscle shortage mainly affects be oh well.
Enough of the boring education now. I hope you enjoyed the post and feel like you have learned something. Please leave a comment if you feel I have missed something out or if you have any questions!
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