Something New to Help with Arthritis

By Kerry Knight

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Arthritis refers to “joint inflammation.”  It can cause pain and swelling in the joints, such as the hip and knees.  Osteoarthritis is the most common form.  It’s also known as “degenerative joint disease” or age-related arthritis, and is more likely to develop as we get older. 

Osteoarthritis develops when inflammation or injury to a joint causes a breakdown of cartilage tissue.  The breakdown causes swelling, resulting in pain, and then deformity. 

Cartilage is a firm, rubbery material that covers the ends of bones in normal joints.  It is primarily made up of water and proteins.  The primary function of cartilage is to reduce friction in the joints and serve as a “shock absorber.”  The shock absorbing quality of normal cartilage comes from its ability to change shape when compressed.  It can do this because of its high water content.  Although cartilage may undergo some repair when damaged, the body does not grow new cartilage after an injury.

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The changes associated with osteoarthritis usually occur slowly over many years.  There are two main types: 

Primary – More generalized;  affecting the fingers, thumbs, spine, hips, and knees.
Secondary – Osteoarthritis that occurs after an injury or inflammation in a joint, or as a result of another condition that may affect the composition of the cartilage.

People who have osteoarthritis of their hips sometimes have problems walking.  Diagnosis can be difficult at first. That's because the pain can manifest itself in different locations, including in the groin area, the front and back of the thighs, buttocks, or knees.  The pain can be stabbing and sharp, or it can be a dull ache, and the hip is often stiff.

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The causes of osteoarthritis of the hip are not fully known.  Factors that may contribute include joint injury,   In addition, osteoarthritis can sometimes be caused by other factors such as having joints that are irregularly formed, genetic defects of one’s cartilage, and a person may be putting extra stress on their joints, either by being overweight, or through excessive, repetitive exercise.   
increasing age, and being overweight.

Symptoms that can lead to a diagnosis of osteoarthritis:

  • Joint stiffness that occurs while getting out of bed
  • Joint stiffness after sitting for long periods of time
  • Any pain, swelling, or tenderness in the joints
  • A sound or feeling (“crunching”) of bone rubbing against bone
  • Inability to move the hip (or other affected joints) to perform routine activities such as putting on your shoes

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There is no single test for diagnosing osteoarthritis, but it is often diagnosed by an abnormal X-rays that shows characteristic features, such as narrowing of the joint and spurring of the joint margins.  Check with your doctor.  He or she will no doubt check your medical history and perform certain physical examinations. An X-ray or MRI may also be ordered of the affected joint(s).

Osteoarthritis can seriously impair the quality of life for the 27 million Americans afflicted with it.  Given that osteoarthritis is so disabling, painful and common, there lots of quack “cures” out there such as taking shark cartilage supplements, to wearing specialized copper jewelry, and even ingesting snake venom.  Conversely, some of the more reliable modalities and methods of dealing with the issue:   

  • Chiropractic care
  • Electricity (such as TENS device)
  • Topical remedies
  • Chondroitin supplement
  • Glucosamine supplement
  • Acupuncture
  • Exercise
  • Weight loss

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Another suggestion that might help tremendously in dealing with osteoarthritis would be warm water therapy, such as the type that can provided by soaking and gently moving your joints in a Walk-in Tub.  As we all know, hot springs have been utilized since the dawn of human history to deal with such maladies as arthritis.  It has never been totally convenient to enjoy warm water therapy until the introduction of a bath tub in general, and the Walk-in Tub in particular.   

These specialized bathtubs, introduced into America within the last 20 years, offer three major aids in dealing with arthritis:

Soaking in warm water.   
Because the human body is buoyant in water, immersing oneself in it takes the strain off the joints, muscles and tendons.  For a while, the negative effects of gravity are neutralized.  That's why a deep-soaking bath in warm water is so relaxing.  The pain seems to temporarily take a break.  The tub comes with an ADA-compliant, slip-resistant seat. You sit down, fill the tub to the chest level, and recline for a soothing and relaxing experience. 

Benefiting from the Air Jet Bubbler.
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On the top side of the tub are buttons that control the hydrotherapeutic air bubbles.  Inside the tub are are 18 air jets.  These create thousands of therapeutic bubbles that gently massage the skin from the shoulders to the toes.  All of the tub’s controls are within easy reach, including a hand-held shower wand with a four-foot metal braided hose for rinsing. 

“Aqua Massage” by its water jets and inline heater. Another button engages the water jets and the inline heater.  The water jets are designed to massage the body fully.  The jets are directional, so that they can target a specific part of the body and can be controlled as to their force and pressure. These six jets are located in the back area, and around the knees and hips.  The inline heater will make sure the water stays warm while the person is enjoying their bathing experience.   

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Over the last several months, I’ve personally noticed the onset of symptoms of osteoarthritis.  These include pinching pain in my hip joints, difficulty getting up and down after sitting for long periods of time, and bones that seem to grind a little.  I was told by my doctor after an X-ray that there was evidence of arthritis along my spine.  Aggravating the situation, I suffered a severe fall about 20 years ago.  It had dislocated my shoulder, and my doctor said that injury would come back to haunt me one day.  It has.  So aging and injury can bring us all to the point of seeking help for osteoarthritis. 

As my wife and I plan the building of our new home in Alabama where we intend to retire, we’ve already made arrangements for the inclusion of the Walk-in Tub.  I'm only 65, and in pretty good shape for my age, but know I’ll be more and more dependent on the Walk-in tub to make the quality of my life more enjoyable.  I highly recommend one for you, whether you need it now or in the near future.

In this article, I discussed the common disease of osetoarthritis. I mentioned the different types of arthritis and some of its main symptoms and also discussed the management and remedies that have been found to help alleviate its pain and disability, especially regular hydrotherapy sessions in a Walk-in tub. 

If you found this article interesting, please share and forward it to friends and family. If you’d like to leave a comment or question, please do so in the Comments section below. 

Customer Testimonial for Tub King's Walk-in Tub

If you’d like to receive a FREE Walk-In Tub Buyers’ Guide, click here. Or, if you’d like to receive a FREE Clawfoot Tub Buyers’ Guide, click here.    

Have a question?  Feel free to contact me at the number or email listed below and I’ll personally get back to you. Thanks for reading; it’s my pleasure to share this information with you. 

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Kerry Knight is a former co-owner of Tub King, Inc., and  in Jacksonville, Florida (now retired). He and his brother, Alan, have many years of experience in the antique and senior bathtub industries. Their companies not only provide superior products, they are also award winners, receiving the “Best of Jacksonville Chamber Award” four years running.  If you’d like to contact them, call (800) 843-4231 or send an email to

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Bathtub Scenes in Horror Movies

By Alan Knight

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It's almost time for the Oscars.  The 87th Academy Awards ceremony is slated for Thursday, February 22, 2015.  Nominees for “Best Picture” include American Sniper, The Imitation Game, Selma, Birdman (or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance), The Grand Budapest Hotel, Boyhood, Whiplahs, and The Theory of Everything.  Out of all the possible choices there is not a single horror movie.  So I started wondering, has a horror movie ever won an Oscar?  Surprisingly, yes!
For Visual Effects and Make Up:  

The Birds (1963)
An American Werewolf in London (1981)
The Fly (1986)
Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992)
Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (1994)

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Furthermore, The Silence of the Lambs won “Best Picture” in 1991, which featured spellbinding performances by Jodi Foster and Anthony Hopkins.

The Exorcist picked up “Best Screenplay” and “Best Sound,” although it garnered nine total nominations. The movie holds the distinction of being the first horror movie ever nominated for “Best Picture.”

One thing that I have noticed about horror movies is that some of the same props seem to recur over and over again.  The chainsaw, the axe, the knife, the sword, the meat cleaver are regulars, but have you ever noticed how man scary movies include a death scene or at least a scary moment in a bathroom, shower or bathtub? 

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Let's start with the Alfred Hitchcock movie, Psycho.  I saw that movie at the theater ... alone!  I don't even remember how I got in to see it, being only 11 years old.  The current rating system was brand new back then.  I just remember when Janet Leigh had that shower curtain thrown back by Anthony Perkins and the stabbing began, I was ready to head for the exit.  It's ironic that the next time I was that scared was when Janet Leigh's daughter was running around the house in Halloween.

Other famous bathtub scenes in horror movies: 

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Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) The scene is set with a young teenage girl taking a bubble bath in a Clawfoot tub.  She begins to sing a lullaby and slowly puts herself to sleep.  That's a big problem because Freddy Krugger comes alive in her dreams.  The razor sharp fingers begin to rise to the surface of the water as she sleeps, then suddenly her mother calls out to her, “Don't fall asleep in there, you could drown you know.”  Then in a flash she is jerked underwater and the screaming begins.

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What Lies Beneath (2000) Michelle Pfeiffer is convinced there is a ghost in the house, and as she takes a bath in a Clawfoot tub, strange things happen. Suddenly, she’s paralyzed, only able to move her toes, as the tub fills to overflowing.  She desperately tries to open the drain with her toes and everything goes wrong.  Suspense mounts as she finds a clever way to shut off the faucet, and the water slowly recedes below her mouth.  It was a very close call and a heart pounding moment.  A few years later, a parody was done of various scary movies and this particular scene was hilarious.

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Grave Encounters (2011) was a low budget movie that was a huge success at the box office.  It was about a team of paranormal experts who lock themselves into a haunted psychiatric ward in an abandoned hospital.  It was a real nail-biter.  The bathtub scene featured a girl in a hospital gown, standing over an old Clawfoot tub in an otherwise empty room.  As one of the technicians gets to the tub, he finds it full of blood.  He looks to the cameraman as a hand reaches out of the tub and pulls him under.  Creepy!

I can't possibly go into detail about all the bathtub scenes in horror movies, but if you want to research it yourself, let me give you a more complete listing:

The Shining

The Changeling

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The House of the Devil



The Tingler

Requiem for a Dream


Cabin Fever

Hostel II



The Lost Boys

Now, to the question:  Why are there so many Clawfoot bathtubs in horror movies?  There can only be one answer.  Think about it, when do you feel most vulnerable?

When you’re naked and all alone. 

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In a bathtub, we undress, get all relaxed, enjoying the warm water.  We lie back, placing our neck on a towel along the rolled rim and close our eyes.  What could possibly go wrong?  That's why the bathtub prop works time and time again.  Just when you least expect something bad to happen, bingo!  The horror movies simply plays on our own sense of vulnerability.

Now, in the real world, Clawfoot tubs have nothing to do with the words “horror,” “terror,” or “scary.”  These beautiful creations of cast iron and porcelain are harmless vessels that bring both beauty to a bathroom and enjoyment to the bather.  Popular models would include the traditional Rolled Top, the Slipper tub, the Double Slipper, the Dual-ended and the Pedestal.  These handsome bathtubs come in many shapes and sizes and provide not only enjoyment, but added value and prestige to your bathroom.

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The only thing scary for some is the price. Make sure you compare prices from different suppliers.  There are several companies that import new cast iron/porcelain tubs and sell them to you in a wide range of prices. You don't have to over-pay to get one of these beautiful models.  Usually, the better companies will run specials and include more choices, such as claw feet made of polished chrome, brushed nickel or oil-rubbed bronze.  There might even be a way to get free shipping.  

And don't forget the hand-held faucet choices such as the “English Telephone,” or the free-standing models.  These can be purchased along with the drain system and the water supply lines.  These fixtures also come in the same finishes as the Clawfoot legs to make a perfect-looking match. 

The only other disturbing thing to beware of is buying one of these tubs in any material other than porcelain. The acrylic models (a.k.a., plastic) simply don't hold up over time.  They have a tendency to lose their shape and eventually discolor.  They can really become a “monster” and you'll not be happy with your buying decision.  Make sure you get a quality cast iron/porcelain tub with a long-lasting warranty.  Unless you drop and anvil in the tub, most cast iron/porcelain tubs will last for a hundred years.

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Also, don't be scared away from making a buying decision.  If you have been looking for years for a way to truly beautify your bathroom, the Clawfoot tub might just be the answer.  If you’ve looked lately at one of the home magazines, you’ve most likely seen a Clawfoot tub.  These elegant-looking tubs make it easy to create a theme around your new tub.  When you have guests, they'll fall in love with it.  And if ever decide to resell you home, this tub might just be the deal maker.  I’ve had several customers tell me that their Clawfoot tub helped to sell their home.

In this article, I talked about why bathtub scenes are so common in the horror movie genre, mentioning several famous horror films that had a frightening scene take place in a Clawfoot tub.  I then went on to explain that in reality, cast iron/porcelain Clawfoot tubs are a real asset to anyone’s home, and serve to enhance its value … as well as the owner’s pleasure in bathing in them.
If you found this article interesting, please share and forward it to friends and family.  If you’d like to leave a comment or question, please do so in the Comments section below.

Testimonial for Cast Iron Tub from Tub King.

If you’d like to receive a FREE Walk-In Tub Buyers’ Guide, click here.  Or, if you’d like to receive a FREE Clawfoot Tub Buyers’ Guide, click here.    

Have a question?  Feel free to contact me at the number or email listed below and I’ll personally get back to you. Thanks for reading; it’s my pleasure to share this information with you.

Check Out Our Special Presidents' Day Sale. Click Here.

Alan Knight is the owner of Tub King, Inc., and  in Jacksonville, Florida. He has many years of experience in the antique and senior bathtub industries. His companies not only provide superior products, they are also award winners, receiving the “Best of Jacksonville Chamber Award” four years running. To contact Tub King directly, call (800)843-4231 or email

Get a Free Giftcard. Click Here for More Information.

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