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What factors contribute to muscle joint and bone symptoms?

Look at the factors described here so you can start to think about how different factors may have an impact on your musculoskeletal health and the symptoms you have.

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How it started

Some concerns start after an injury, such as a fall. Others can result from doing more activity than you usually do, such as increased gardening, or starting a new activity or hobby. Sometimes there is no obvious single cause.

How we are made

Our ability to move well can be affected by our individual differences. These can result from what we are born with, what happens to us, (e.g. previous injuries, surgery, medical conditions, work), and how we age.

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How we move

We need movement, activity and purpose to stay healthy. This is important regardless of age. Regular activity helps our body cope with what we want and need to do.

Please look for information on benefits of activity and exercise and advice footwear in step three to understand how this can have an effect on your bones, joints and muscles.

What we think & how we feel

Our thoughts and feelings influence our experience of pain and how we react to it. For example, being worried, anxious or depressed can make our symptoms feel worse and change our behaviour.

Feeling reassured and confident about what to do can help us to move better and recover well.

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What activities we do & how we do them

Our body adapts to the things we do each day. Doing too much of the same thing, for example performing the same movement in an awkward position or sitting for too long, puts us at risk of developing a muscle, joint or bone concern.

Giving our body time to gradually adapt to varied activities and demands reduces this risk and helps us to move better and do what we want and need to do.

How fit and healthy we are

To successfully do what matters it is important to be strong, flexible and fit enough. Our sleep and mental health can affect how well we respond to the challenges of life.

Our lifestyle choices around diet, alcohol, smoking and activity will affect the health of our muscles, joints and bones.

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Thinking about the factors described here, move to step three for more information about how they affect you, what you can do about them and other help that is available.