Diet Tips To Ease Arthritis Pain
The Mediterranean diet has grown in popularity as it has been shown to help improve brain and heart health. The basis of the Mediterranean diet is poultry and fish, plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, olive oil, nuts and seeds, as well as reduced intake of processed food and sugars.
Research has shown that patients who followed the Mediterranean diet experienced a reduction in symptoms.
To adhere to the Mediterranean diet, aim for at least four servings of vegetables and two or more servings of fruit, and use olive oil more often as it helps to reduce inflammation.
If youre unsure what types of foods you should be consuming with arthritis, here are some guidelines that can aid in treatment.
Change the type of fat in your diet: Olive oil, for instance, is a good example of a healthy fat. Read labels carefully to spot saturated or trans fats.
Eat more oily fish: Oily fish contain essential fatty acids that can work to reduce inflammation.
Eat iron-rich foods: Iron-rich foods are eggs, green leafy vegetables, beans, and red meat. For higher iron absorption, consume iron foods with vitamin C.
Eat calcium-rich foods: Calcium helps keep bones strong, which is important for arthritis patients in order to reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
Is It Possible To Cure Arthritis
There is no cure for arthritis.
However, a person can opt for natural remedies alongside their medical treatment, such as yoga, skin products, and warm compresses, among others, to help manage their symptoms.
There are also workshops that help people live with this condition and learn about others experiences.
How Exercises Help Prevent Arthritis
- Helping in weight loss. Exercises and workouts, when done consistently over time, help reduce weight. This, in turn, reduces the stress on hip and knee joints, reducing the risk of arthritis.
- Supporting healthy cartilage. Joint cartilage needs motion and some stress to stay healthy. Synovial fluid, stored in the cartilage, is excreted whenever the joint is used to deliver nutrients and lubrication. It also reduces inflammation of the joint.
- Reducing pain. Exercise strengthens muscles, which then provide better support and stability to joints. This stability helps prevent bones from dislocating, and protect them from impact and friction, therefore reducing pain. Endorphins released by the body during exercise are the bodys natural painkillers.
- Increasing motion and function. Exercises keep the joints and muscles agile and flexible, increasing their range of motion. This also reduces the chances of stiff muscles, which can lead to arthritis.
- Increasing strength. Exercises increase the strength of muscles, which reduce the amount of stress that would have been placed on joints.
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Natural Remedies For Arthritis In Hands
There are natural ways to combat the pain, stiffness, and swelling associated with arthritis. These natural remedies can provide rest for your hands and reduce the pain and stiffness you may be experiencing.
Ice packs: Just like an injury, when inflammation occurs its important to apply ice packs to reduce it. Applying ice packs regularly can reduce irritation and soreness associated with arthritis.
Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar is a natural anti-inflammatory. Drinking a teaspoon with some warm water daily can help.
Honey and cinnamon: This combination is best used to relax stiff muscles. Honey has antiseptic properties and cinnamon is a natural anti-inflammatory. Combine a tablespoon of honey with half a teaspoon of cinnamon and consume each morning on an empty stomach.
Epsom salt: Epsom salt can help reduce stiffness, inflammation, and pain. It is packed with magnesium, which is essential for bone mineralization. Simply combine Epsom salt with water and allow your sore hands to soak.
Olive oil: You can massage olive oil onto your hands or consume it with meals as a means to reduce inflammation.
Garlic: Another natural anti-inflammatory, garlic should be consumed regularly to reduce inflammation and pain.
Fenugreek seeds: Fenugreek seeds are anti-inflammatories that also provide antioxidants. To prepare, soak fenugreek seeds overnight in water. In the morning, drain the water and consume the seeds.
What Is Osteoarthritis Of The Hand
- The base of your thumb, where it meets your wrist
- One of the joints closest to your fingertips
- The middle joint of a finger
There’s no cure, but there are a lot of ways to protect your joints and feel better.
Without treatment, osteoarthritis gets worse over time. Itâs important to get a diagnosis and a treatment plan as soon as possible.
Herbs To Fight Arthritis Pain
There are different types of arthritis, but they can all cause pain. Some natural remedies may help you manage mild symptoms, particularly if you use them alongside other treatment options.
Certain herbs may have anti-inflammatory properties that can help with rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis .
Still, theres a lack of scientific evidence to support the use of many of these options, and some may have negative effects.
Before opting for natural remedies for arthritis, be sure to talk to a doctor first, as some options may interact with existing medications.
Changes In Surrounding Joints
In patients with advanced thumb base arthritis, the neighboring joints may become more mobile than normal.
Thumb extension deformity. This patient has lost mobility at the base of the thumb due to arthritis. The next joint closer to the tip of the thumb has become more mobile than normal to make up for the arthritic joint. Normally, the thumb does not come to a right angle with the rest of the hand.
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How Can You Build Your Range Of Motion
Stiff joints are no fun for anyone, but for people struggling with arthritis, a stiff joint equates to a painful joint. If a patient with arthritis attempts to push their affected joint out of its range of motion, they will inevitably experience many uncomfortable sensations.
These painful twinges can be downright agony to deal with on a daily basis, which is why it is important to increase flexibility and range of motion. This can be achieved through physical therapy. Range of motion treatment usually involves flexibility and strength exercises, which gradually allow your joints to become more limber and strengthen supporting muscles.
Exercise #: Wrist Stretch
Dont forget about your wrists, which can also get sore and stiff from arthritis. To exercise your wrist, hold your right arm out with the palm facing down. With your left hand, gently press down on the right hand until you feel a stretch in your wrist and arm. Hold the position for a few seconds. Repeat 10 times. Then, do the entire sequence with the left hand.
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Meditation For Pain Management
Meditation is an ancient mind and body practice in Buddhism and other Eastern religions. It puts your focus and attention on the current moment so life’s distractions do not get in your way.
Meditation has many benefits, including:
- Increases calmness and relaxation
- Helps people cope with illness
- Enhances overall well-being
In addition, research shows meditation can help manage chronic pain associated with conditions like OA and RA.
In a 2016 review of literature, researchers evaluated the use of mindfulness-based mediation’s effects on pain management. They found that mindfulness meditation reduced pain for people with chronic conditions. However, researchers found that short-term was more effective at pain control than longer-term meditation.
Exercises For Treating Hand Arthritis
You can also perform specific hand exercises to improve mobility and strength, and reduce pain. Below are some hand exercises you can utilize to ease your hand arthritis.
Make a fist: This is as simple as it sounds just make a fist. It may not seem difficult, but when your hand is inflamed, stiff, and in pain, even making a fist can seem like a challenge. For this exercise, practice making and releasing a fist. Try to make your fist tighter and tighter each time.
Finger bends: With your hand wide open, take turns bending each finger one at a time. Hold the finger bent for a few seconds before releasing.
Thumb bend: Similar to finger bend, but this motion only requires the bending of your thumb. Once bent, hold for a few seconds, release, and repeat.
Make an O: Start with your hand open, but bring your fingers and thumb together as if youre creating the letter O. In this position, your fingers and thumb should have a slight bend to them. Hold this position, release, and repeat.
Table bend: Place your hand on its side, pinky side down, on top of a table your thumb should be facing the sky. Position your fingers as if you are giving a thumbs up fingers curled into palm, thumb up in the air. With thumb still pointing up, release your fingers so your hand looks like an L. Repeat.
Finger lift: With your palm face down on a table top, take turns lifting one finger at a time away from the table. Hold it up for a few seconds, then place it back down.
Turn To Acupuncture For Relief Of Osteoarthritis
The ancient Chinese practice of acupuncture may be treatment for osteoarthritis. It involves inserting thin needles into specific points on the body to relieve pain, explains the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. Research into acupuncture is still ongoing, with some studies showing that acupuncture is better for osteoarthritis treatment than doing nothing, but perhaps not as good as other options. Its been difficult to evaluate acupuncture, but there is a consensus now that acupuncture may be of value, says Altman.
Natural Remedies To Avoid
Not every natural remedy touted to treat rheumatoid arthritis is safe or effective. For example, Dr. Rosian says supplements such as glucosamine and MSM likely dont have much of an impact.
You should also steer clear of any supplement that says its an immune booster. This sounds counterintuitive, but people should avoid immune boosters, Dr. Rosian adds. This can boost your whole immune system.While that might sound like a good thing, this has the potential for unintended bad side effects, she notes. People living with rheumatoid arthritis dont have a weak immune system. They have a dysfunctional immune system. So, itll boost the good parts of their immune system and also boost the part thats not functioning properly.
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Youre Gonna Want To Start Using These Asap
You use your hands for so many things during the day that if you were to look at a highlight reel, you might be shocked at how many hours your hands are on duty. And its not even the obvious things, like lifting heavy objects, that are the biggest offenders for arthritis hand pain in your fingers and wrists.
Tasks that require gripping, such as opening jars, turning door knobs, cutting food, and lifting bags often can overstress the small joints of the hand and wrist, causing pain, says Carole Dodge, OTR, CHT, a certified hand therapist who specializes in arthritis and rheumatology at University of Michigan Health System Occupational Therapy. And when you have pain, you start avoiding certain activities, which can lead to weakness. This can create a vicious cycle that leads to further hand pain and weakness.
But you can cut down on joint pain and strain in your hands by making simple adjustments to how you perform everyday tasks hanging a washcloth to dry instead of wringing it out, or carrying a purse over your shoulder instead of on your wrist. Each time you make these kinds of adjustments you create everyday habits that become natural and pay off for your future.
These tips help people continue to perform tasks while preventing further stress on the involved/inflamed joints that may lead to potential deformity, says Dodge. This is important for people with active hand arthritis.
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Orthotics Help Relieve Osteoarthritis Pain
Mechanical devices called orthotics can be used as treatment for osteoarthritis by supporting and protecting arthritic joints and relieving osteoarthritis pain, according to the ACR. A brace placed on an inflamed joint can provide pain relief by supporting the joint and relieving some of the stress caused by body weight or daily use. Braces can also help realign joints that are being distorted by arthritis.
Shoes are another form of orthotics that are used in osteoarthritis treatment soles that absorb some of the shock of walking can be very beneficial. Altman notes that one of the most common orthotics a cane is often used incorrectly. He suggests getting properly measured for the correct length of cane for your height and learning how to use it to your best advantage.
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Bromelain A Natural Anti
Bromelain is an enzyme with proteolytic action. Its extracted from the fruit or the stem of the pineapple. It stands out for its anti-inflammatory, circulatory and immunomodulatory properties.
For that reason, bromelain is effective in preventing and relieving rheumatoid arthritis. Research shows that it can help to significantly reduce inflammation.
Therefore, you can take a bromelain supplement to help prevent arthritis in your hands. It can also help to relieve discomfort, such as pain and inflammation, if you already suffer from it. This will help you avoid having to take anti-inflammatory drugs and having to suffer from their side effects.
How To Treat Osteoarthritis With Mind
Certain practices that focus on the interaction between mind and body can be a natural treatment for arthritis as people relax and stretch muscles while allowing the mind to focus itself away from the pain.
Yoga can improve your flexibility and strengthen muscles both important for the support of arthritic joints. Tai chi can also ease symptoms in the short term, specifically pain, stiffness, and movement in people who have osteoarthritis in their knees, according to a research review published in August 2013 in Complementary Therapies in Medicine.
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Natural Treatment For Arthritis
Osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis, is a biomechanical and physiological disease. The cartilage that provides a buffer between bones breaks down and wears away, allowing the bones to rub and grind against each other, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons .
While many view osteoarthritis as a disease of the elderly, this is entirely inaccurate. Three out of five arthritis patients are younger than 65. Osteoarthritis can result from overuse of joints, and is often a consequence of demanding sports, obesity, or aging. If you were an athlete or dancer in your younger years and wonder why your knee or hip aches when you climb out of bed in the morning, ask your doctor about osteoarthritis.
Osteoarthritis is common in weight-bearing joints the knees, hips, feet, and spine and comes on gradually over months or years. Except for the pain in the joints, it does not cause you to feel sick or have fatigue, as other types of inflammatory arthritis do.
With osteoarthritis, you may feel fine except for a few minutes of stiffness on arising in the morning or stiffness after sitting. Other symptoms of osteoarthritis include:
Additional reporting by Madeline Vann, MPH
Exercises To Relieve Arthritis
The following exercises increase blood flow to cartilage, bringing it the nutrients it needs to stay healthy and prevent further breakdown. Consult your healthcare provider before starting these exercises to make sure theyre appropriate for you.
If so, the exercises are easy to do and can ease your arthritis pain:
The stronger your muscles are, the more weight they will be able to handle. Like other types of exercise, hand exercises won’t “work” overnight. But they should with time and repetition.
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Ask Your Doctor About Complementary Medicine
As interest in herbal medicine grows, conventional doctors have become more willing to assess the benefits of alternative remedies.
When treating arthritis, some herbs may complement your current medications. But its important to understand that herbs can cause serious side effects.
Buying herbal treatments from a reputable source is also essential.
The FDA doesnt monitor herbs for quality, purity, packaging, or dosage, so theres no way of knowing if a product is contaminated or contains inactive ingredients.
Discuss all arthritis treatment options with your doctor and dont stop taking prescribed medications unless they recommend it.
Arthritis In Hands And Fingers
The process of osteoarthritis is complex. It affects bone, cartilage, soft tissue, and the connective tissue in your joints.
Osteoarthritis wears away the articular cartilage in a joint. Cartilage is the cushioning material between bones. This wearing away can cause swelling and irritation of the synovial lining, which produces the synovial fluid that helps protect and lubricate the joint.
When osteoarthritis affects the joints of your hands or fingers, it can cause:
- joint deformity
The pain can get worse whenever you use your hand for repetitive tasks. For example, typing on a computer keyboard or gripping utensils in the kitchen can cause discomfort. You may also lose strength in your hands. This weakness can make it hard to do everyday tasks, such as opening jars.
Some medication options may help treat hand arthritis. For example, you can take oral pain-relieving medications.
You can also get steroid injections in your joints or splint your hands to give them support. If these options dont work, surgery may help to reduce pain.
Home treatments can also help to reduce the pain and other symptoms of osteoarthritis in your hands and fingers.
Hand and finger exercises can be a noninvasive way to:
- keep your joints flexible
- improve range of motion
- relieve arthritis pain
Hand exercises can help strengthen the muscles that support the hand joints. This can help you perform hand movements with less discomfort.
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