Loosing Life to Joint Pain?
The ability to move around independently and to live pain-free are some of the things that joint pain denies you. Furthermore, treatment could prove elusive for many years, leaving you in excruciating pain and totally dependent on others.
Joints connect the bones of our limbs and provide support for locomotion. Joint pain could be a result of more problematic musculoskeletal disorders that affect tendons, muscles, ligaments, nerves, and joints. It may affect any part of your body, but the most frequently occurring are knee pain, shoulder pain, and hip pain.
The Major Causes of Joint Pain
Damage to the joints could result from aging, injury, or disease. The damage, coupled with inflammation, cause joint pain. The problems associated with this condition include:
- Various forms of Arthritis
- Some diseases such as Lyme disease, Chikungunya
Seeking a Cure for Joint Pain
Effective remedies depend on the cause of the pain. Doctors and therapists aim to eliminate inflammation and suffering. The manifestation of joint pain varies from debilitating to mild pain.
The pain may last just a few days (mild), several weeks (acute), or go on for months (chronic). However, any sort of joint pain – no matter how mild and short-lived – adversely affects the quality of your life.
Although aging is one of the causes of musculoskeletal problems, nothing can be done to stop it, as it is a natural process. However, the lifestyle choices you make over time significantly contribute to your health in your twilight years.
Obesity is a leading cause of osteoarthritis. To avoid getting the disease, steer clear of a sedentary lifestyle and adhere to an exercise plan. You will stop problems of weight gain in their tracks and avoid joint health concerns.
Pain management and treatment plans for pain include any of the following methods or a combination of them:
- Alternative treatments
- Physical therapy
Medication for Joint Pain
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID)
- Cox-2 medicines, the newer type of NSAID
- Muscle relaxants
- Antiepileptic drugs
- Injections of a local anesthetic with steroid medication
- Topical agents such as creams containing methyl salicylate
- Injections to remove fluid from the joint
- Injections with hyaluronan
These prescription and over-the-counter drugs can manage inflammation and offer relief. Consult your doctor on a treatment plan as some of the drugs associated with management of joint pain have far-reaching and possibly fatal effects such as stroke, heart attack, gastrointestinal bleeding, liver damage, and constipation.
Some medical interventions turn out to be temporary solutions. Pain treatment is ineffective if it masks an injury or underlying health problems. This calls for a careful diagnosis of the joint before embarking on relieving pain.
Physical Therapy for Joint Pain
You may opt for physical therapy with or without medication depending on the nature of the pain and your personal preference. Physical therapy seeks to stabilize joints and toughen the muscles around the joint to improve mobility and enhance joint health.
Other than advising you on a weight management strategy (if you are overweight), you can also use special techniques such as:
- Cold or heat therapy
- Electrical nerve stimulation TENS machine (these are available in home versions)
- Manipulation (Chiropractor)
- Bowen Work
- Rolfing (in some cases)
- Exercises such as walking, bicycle riding and swimming
- Strengthening exercises
- Physical Therapy
- Essential Oils
As an additional measure, consider discussing with your employer about modifying your work conditions – if your ailment is work-related. According to the CDC, most companies now integrate wellness programs such as standing computer workstations, redesigned office spaces, and modified work tools and equipment. These measures aid in eliminating joint health problems that arise from a sedentary lifestyle, physical strain, and uncomfortable work postures.
I have recently purchased a “Vari-Desk” which allows me to lift my entire computer system up (with both monitors) so that I can stand while working. I have a mat that lets me exercise my calves, feet and legs which working. This keeps my energy moving and helps with stiffness and discomfort from sitting too long which sometimes aggravates joint pain and inflammation.
Alternative Treatments for Joint Pain
Joint health supplements, especially those containing green tea, Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, chondroitin and glucosamine contribute to improved joint health. Most people prefer these supplements or special foods for joint health since they have no dangerous side effects. Glucosamine combined with chondroitin treat cartilage damage. Fatty acids like Omega-3 and Omega-6 help the body to produce leukotriens and prostaglandins which control inflammation.
I have found Essential Fatty Acids to be one of the most powerful and supportive supplements. I have had many of many of my clients find this to also very true. They also have a tendency to lower your Cholesterol.
Additionally, foods for joint health may already be within your reach, and you may only need to adjust your diet to take the required amounts for improved well-being. Some researchers say that eliminating foods like citrus fruits and vegetables significantly reduces arthritis complications. On the other hand, others insist on the importance of fresh fruit and vegetables as they contain antioxidants which reduce progression of joint disease.
Eat foods and supplements fortified with vitamin D. But some foods with the vitamin, such as dairy products, may increase pain and inflammation. Your best bet would be getting out in the sun since sunlight stimulates the formation of vitamin D in your body.
A balanced diet free of junk food is another way of maintaining healthy bones and joints.
Processed foods create toxins and toxins create inflammation and inflammation creates pain. Eat organic, clean, and as natural as possible.
It goes without saying that pure, structured or alkaline water at the amount of ½ ounce per each pound of your body weight is mandatory for joint pain. You you do not have access to these type waters make sure you drink filtered, non-fluoride water.
Although supplements offer safer yet effective treatment options, ensure you work with a certified therapist to monitor allergies. You should also look out for any side effects such as increased blood sugar or toxicity. Fake and substandard joint health supplements exist so ensure you obtain yours from certified suppliers.
Homeopathy can be supportive of joint pain as well. There are no side effects from Homeopathy and will not interfere with your regular medications. Use 5 or 6 pellets of both Rhus Tox and Ruta Grav 30C or 30X and dissolve under the tongue 4 times a day. This can help with cartilage and joint pain. These two remedies work well together and be purchased at most any health food store. They are particularly useful if the pain is improved when moving.
Bryonia is a homeopathic remedy that is best when movement increases the joint pain. Follow the same directions for this remedy as described above for Rhus Tox and Ruta Grav. Do not take Rhus Tox and Ruta Grav AND Bryonia at the same time. There would be no harm; it is just that Bryonia and Rhus cancel each other so you would not notice any improvement.
Essential Oils can also be supportive. I suggest you google essential oils for joint pain and find the one that works best for your situation (you can do the same for Homeopathy as there a many remedies that may be effective for you.)
Joint Pain Relief at Home
Home care for immediate but short-term pain relief follows the PRICE acronym. PRICE is a first aid plan that requires you to:
- Protect the joint by immobilizing it with a wrap or brace
- Rest the painful joint
- Ice the joint area for at least fifteen minutes several times daily
- Compress the joint with a stretchy wrap
- Elevate the painful part above the level of your heart to minimize swelling
These are just short-term measures, and you must see a doctor or therapist for full treatment if the pain persists. Although management of joint pain could be long-term – especially with advancement in age, extensive injury, or a chronic ailment – treatment interventions exist to give you pain-free days and independence to enjoy a productive life. Get rid of joint pain and enjoy life once again!
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Author: Esateys Stuchiner
Esateys (pronounced Ee sáh teez) is an International Life Transformational Speaker, Author, Master Facilitator, Life Coach and Expert in the Human condition. She is a Nationally and Board Certified Nurse Practitioner. For over 30 years, she has practiced, taught and lectured extensively in the allopathic and alternative medicine field.
Esateys is known for her groundbreaking work in the areas of personal empowerment and health restoration using mindset and inner connection as the catalyst for all change.
Esateys describes herself as the ‘Architect of the New You’ and has dedicated her life and professional career to helping her clients create “New Beginnings” by facilitating self empowerment, economic freedom and restored health.
For more information, go to esateys.com.