Arthritis is a blanket term for a wide range of disorders affecting various joints throughout the body. The major forms of arthritis include osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. In all cases, patients experience joint pain which is usually constant, though many people report that symptoms flare up and down from day to day. Age and genetics are major contributing factors to the development of arthritis. While a number of medications are available to treat arthritis, octors stress the importance of remaining active as a means of improving symptoms. Many patients experience positive results from a combination of physical therapy, exercise and pharmaceutical treatments.