These may be divided into mechanical, biochemical, biological and psychological causes:
Mechanical causes include:
1. Accidents and injuries, especially falls, that damage the joint cartilages, the joint capsules, the intervertebral discs, the tendons and ligaments, or other structures near the joints.
2. Spinal misalignments or subluxations of the joints. They put pressure on the joints that cause pain and can cause more damage over time. These are chiropractic problems that are quite common, and totally ignored by the medical profession.
3. Less commonly, mechanical stress due to certain occupations or hobbies can slowly damage the joints, even if one does not have an accident. An example is lifting heavy weights for years for a job. Another example is running, which is hard on the knees.
Biochemical causes include:
1. Nutrient deficiencies. These are extremely common. Among the most important deficiencies that cause inflammation in the body are a low level of omega-3 fatty acids, low vitamin D, and low zinc. These deficiencies are epidemic, even among people who eat a supposedly healthy and balanced diet.
Raising the level of these nutrients is an important part of every development program. It can be done with foods, to a degree, or with nutritional supplements.
2. Toxic metals that deposit in the joints. Among the most important are calcium, iron, manganese and copper.
3. Generalized inflammation in the body that affects the joints.
4. A catabolic state of the body in which the body cannot rebuild the joint cartilages fast enough to overcome the normal wear and tear on the joint cartilages. This is common as one ages, but also occurs in young people, at times.
Biological causes include the presence of bacteria, viruses or parasites that damage the joint surfaces.
Psychological causes include stress, mental rigidity and perhaps other mental or emotional factors that occasionally play an important role in joint problems.
If one suspects mechanical misalignment of the spine or other bones as a cause, which is common, this will require the services of those trained in correcting spinal and other misalignments.