You’re likely just thinking about opening jars, pulling out weeds, hanging up washing or even just getting out of your chair. But for those with arthritis, these sorts of everyday tasks can be difficult and painful, if not impossible.
More than 91 million American adults may have arthritis, according to a recent estimate. Most of the cases are commonly osteoarthritis, which causes joint damage and pain.
There’s no cure for arthritis pain, and for those who have this condition, the focus is on pain relief and how to improve movement and quality of life. You may need to try several different treatments, or combinations of treatments before you determine what works best for you.
Arthritis Pain Relief
Arthritis pain relief medications vary depending on the type of arthritis. Commonly used arthritis medications include:
- Analgesics. These drugs inhibit inflammation-producing proteins called cytokines. The medicines include etanercept (Enbrel), infliximab (Remicade), and adalimumab (Humira).
- NSAIDs. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen (commonly known as Advil or Motrin) and naproxen sodium (Aleve), reduce pain and inflammation.
- Steroids. Prescription corticosteroids such as prednisone and methylprednisolone (Medrol) help control inflammation and slow joint damage by inhibiting the immune system.
- DMARDs. Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs used to treat rheumatoid arthritis by slowing or stopping your immune system from attacking your joints. Examples include methotrexate (Trexall) and hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil).
Arthritis pain doesn’t just cause discomfort, pain, and disability, it’s expensive. But there is hope, and life doesn’t have to be about waiting for the next bout of pain to pass. These home remedies for arthritis can help you beat the pain.
Keeping the joints warm when you’re experiencing pain can help alleviate the symptoms. Use a heating pad or wrap the joint with a scarf to keep warm.
Light stroking and kneading of muscles may increase blood flow and warm affected joints, temporarily relieving pain. Make sure your massage therapist knows which joints are affected by arthritis.
- Weight Loss
Evidence shows losing weight can be hugely beneficial for people with OA. A recent study found patients who shed pounds had less inflammation and pain, better function, faster-walking speed, and a better quality of life.
This therapy uses fine needles inserted at specific points on the skin to reduce many types of pain, including that caused by some types of arthritis.
A review of 17 studies published in the journal Musculoskeletal Care found that yoga reduced osteoarthritis pain. But experts recommend avoiding hot yoga if you have joint problems. The heat may make you feel as if you can stretch more than you should, which can further damage joints.
Regular exercise is a great way to alleviate arthritis pain. In fact, exercise is considered key to arthritis management, as mentioned above in “Weight Loss.” Exercise promotes the maintenance of healthy, strong muscles, flexibility, endurance, and joint mobility. Since rest helps to lessen active joint inflammation, fatigue, and pain, it’s important to strike a balance between resting and exercise.
- Epsom Salt (Magnesium Sulfate)
This contains magnesium sulfate which sounds kind of crazy, but it’s really quite a wonderful substance. A naturally occurring mineral, magnesium sulfate has been used to get relief from pain for years, namely because of its high levels of magnesium.
- Ginger and Turmeric
Both are anti-inflammatories and will help with rheumatoid arthritis. Turmeric, in particular, has a powerful antioxidant and lowers the levels of 2 enzymes responsible for causing inflammation.
- Green Tea
The polyphenols in green tea are known for their joint-protecting and anti-inflammatory properties. But, it’s not just the polyphenols that are thought to help out RA sufferers. It’s really the antioxidants found in the polyphenols which are thought to suppress the immune system.
- Capsaicin (Chili Pepper) Cream
This cream can also relieve osteoarthritis pain, and it’s available without a prescription. The capsaicin comes from chili peppers, a potent inhibitor of neuropeptide which is associated with the inflammatory process.
Arthritis is a progressive condition that causes pain and stiffness on the joints. Without treatment, arthritis can cause permanent damage to the joints or progress more quickly. Many different medications interventions are available, but using home remedies alongside these may be more effective in relieving pain and increasing mobility.
Before making any lifestyle, incorporating natural remedies for arthritis, or considering medications or interventional procedures, talk to your pain doctor to determine the right combination of treatments for you. If you don’t currently have a pain specialist, you find one at Plainsboro, New Jersey. Dr. Ronak Patel specializes in the treatment of arthritis pain.
Schedule an appointment today. You can also call him at (609) 269 4451.
Disclaimer: Information on this website is not intended to be used in place of your professional medical advice or treatment. Please consult your doctor or healthcare provider with any questions regarding a medical condition.