That ache in your muscles, that uncomfortable swelling, and stiffness; if you have arthritis, you’ll know this familiar and the not so pleasant feeling all too well. In the US it is estimated that over 50 million adults have arthritis with 300,000 children are affected, while the UK’s estimates come in at around 10 million people or roughly 15% of the entire population. It is quite a common condition, but it isn’t just one singular disease, arthritis is a general term for over 100 types, ranging from the most well-known, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis, to the lesser-known Fibromyalgia, lupus, and enteropathy arthritis varieties.
If you’ve been diagnosed in a clinic, you’ll know the wide variety of treatment options available to you, and we encourage you to take full advantage of these and follow your doctor’s advice. If you have not yet been diagnosed, we recommend seeing a doctor as soon as possible and get your condition under control, as they say: the earlier, the better.
That said, in addition to their traditional medical treatments, many patients have found that natural methods help ease pain and can contribute to a healthier overall life. Below we’ll take a look at five of the best, natural ways to get relief from your pain.
5 natural treatments
You’ve heard the phrase, “you are what you eat,” but did you know that your diet plays a massive role in how you feel, and that includes your arthritis. Current recommendations suggest ensuring you get a sufficient amount of Omega 3 fatty acids, found in fish oils, and gamma-linolenic acid, from blackcurrants, evening primrose, etc. to keep those joints supple. But if you’re looking for something a little tastier that’s good for you too, you can try one of these smoothies for arthritis pain made with ingredients such as turmeric, pineapple, mango, strawberries and more for a delicious boost.
It might seem like a hard task to get going if your muscles are already aching, but exercise is one of the best activities for improving the flexibility of your joints. While we don’t recommend hitting the gym too hard, low-impact workouts – walking, swimming, yoga, etc. – can bring relief both in the short and long term.
Think massage is a luxury for when you have a spare moment? Think again. The Arthritis Foundation and Tiffany Field, PhD, director of the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami School of Medicine believe that massage can benefit those suffering from the condition by improving stiffness, range of motion, and reducing pain. However, before beginning any course of treatment, get in touch with your doctor who will recommend you a specialist experienced in dealing with those with arthritis to prevent additional injury.
If you’re not a meat-eater, it might be time to hit that Omega 3 supplements right away to ensure your muscles are sufficiently lubricated; Omega 3 can’t be made in your body, so you need to rely on foods or supplements to get your daily intake. There are also a number of other supplements purported to help ease arthritis pain, such as Glucosamine, Green tea, Vitamin D, Borage oil, Bromelain, Devil’s Claw, Ginger, Rose Hips, Stinging Nettle, etc. However, check with your doctor first to ensure they don’t clash with your current medication and next mix and match.
This is mind over matter; while we’re not suggesting that meditation will aid you during a massive flare up for immediate relief, undertaking mediation has been proven to reduce the stress reaction within the body and give you better tools to cope with it. This, in turn, leads to fewer flare-ups and gives you the tools to use the power of your mind to deal better with those aches when they do occur.