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Arthritis Pain? Find a Solution that Works for You (Overview)

Arthritis is a degenerative joint disease that causes chronic pain, stiffness, and swelling. Arthritis can affect any joint in the body, but the knees, hips, and ankles are the most bothersome. People with arthritis 01, fortunately, have a variety of alternatives for managing their pain.

Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs

As the first line of defence against arthritic pain, orthopedists, or doctors who specialize in treating the bones and joints of the body, typically prescribe over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines or NSAIDs. Aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen are some of the medications that are used to relieve pain and inflammation.

Heat

Heat has been used for hundreds of years to soothe the pain and inflammation from arthritis. Heating pads can be effective in soothing pain but will not aid the inflammation that causes the pain. Various heating ointments are on the market that produces warmth on the surface of the skin. These can be helpful for nighttime joint pain.

Exercise

Although pain may make people feel less like moving, exercise has been shown to be helpful in managing arthritis pain. Exercise helps to increase blood flow to the joint and reduce swelling. It also helps to strengthen the muscles that support the joint and aids in increasing mobility.

Massage

Natural therapies such as massage have been found to be helpful in stimulating circulation to the affected joint, reducing swelling, and increasing overall relaxation and ability to handle pain.

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is an ancient Asian healing method that can be useful for people with chronic arthritis pain. Very fine needles are inserted into the body at specific points to relieve pain and increase overall well-being.

Steroid Injections

Corticosteroid medications are very effective in reducing inflammation in joints. These drugs are injected into the affected joint itself. However, the drugs cannot be used more than a few times each year because of various Tamoxifen side effects.

Hyaluronic Acid Injections

Hyaluronic acid is a substance that is naturally produced in the human body that helps to lubricate and cushion joints. When the natural cushioning of the body is worn away in arthritis, physicians can replace it artificially with synthetic hyaluronic compounds. These can help to relieve the bone-on-bone pain that often occurs with arthritis.

When Surgery is Needed

Some cases of arthritis may be so severe that drugs, natural therapies, and injections no longer provide relief. In these cases, the orthopedic physician may recommend surgery to remove damaged tissue from the joint. If the joint has been significantly damaged by arthritis, the doctor may recommend surgery to replace the joint with synthetic materials.

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Arthritis Pain? Find a Solution that Works for You

Dr. Ozair

Written by Dr. Ozair (CEO of SignSymptom.com) as physician writers are physicians who write creatively in fields outside their practice of medicine.