Why Trust Verywell Health
As a seasoned health writer, Jennifer Nied understands how vital quality product recommendations are for treating symptoms safely and effectively at home. For over 10 years, she has reviewed products, interviewed experts, scrutinized ingredients, and pored over research studies and claims, to help readers like you understand what works for your specific conditions. Every product in this piece was selected taking into account recommendations from doctors, published research, and real customer reviews.
Additional reporting to this story by Danielle Zoellner and Elizabeth Yuko
As a seasoned health writer, Danielle Zoellner knows the importance of finding just the right product to fit your medical needs. Throughout her career, Danielle has interviewed a variety of experts in the medical and health fields while reviewing dozens of products. Her experience and knowledge in the field work together to help readers like yourself find the best products for your daily life.
As a seasoned health writer and editorand someone with rheumatoid arthritisElizabeth Yuko understands how much of a difference finding the right product makes for those with arthritis. Shes always on the lookout for new products, techniques, and services that can help people cope with their health challenges.
How To Choose The Most Popular Otc Arthritis Medications
The three most crucial criteria to consider are price, quality, and popularity.Price is an obvious factor to consider, as you want to ensure it is acceptable for your needs.Quality should also be examined because buying a low-quality goods will not help you achieve your main aim of obtaining the best product.Finally, while not as obvious as price or quality, popularity can be just as significant as both when it comes to attracting new customers.
Sweet Relief Is On Its Way
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Arthritis is a debilitating and persistent condition. In 2012, an estimated 52.5 million people in the U.S. had arthritis or one of the rheumatic diseases. That number is expected to increase to nearly 80 million people by 2040. But there are plenty of over-the-counter treatment options including creams, lotions, gels, and oils with anti-inflammatory, anesthetic, and additional properties to relieve pain.
Topical medications for pain relief come in multiple formscreams, gels, patches, etc., says Dena Barsoum, MD, a physiatrist at HSS. Consider what body part you are applying it to and what form might work best for you. Its always important to look closely at the active ingredients in any medication you use. Over-the-counter medications sometimes have very flashy packaging and make grand claims about what they can do.”
However, there isnt a one-size-fits-all solution. Product formulas include distinct active ingredients so each individual should test what works best for their arthritis symptoms and lifestyle.
Here are a few of the best arthritis creams on the market.
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Why Should I Buy A
You can tell if you need or want a otc arthritis medications by looking at your existing inventory. You probably dont need it and should reconsider buying it. If you cant get go of the old one, you could sell it and use the proceeds to buy the new one.This is a fun and easy approach to finish your task.
Lets face it, we all want to feel good about our purchases. But there are so many! How can you know which is best? You need not be concerned because Aids Quilt has your back. Our trained staff is here to help you find what works for you. Before making a final decision, you can take advantage of our free consultations. Let us show you how easy shopping for home audio equipment can be when you have an expert on your side!
Over The Counter Or Prescription
The number of people that suffer from arthritis continues to grow each year and research continues to not only find the cause but also to find more effective treatments. The pain from arthritis is caused by many different reasons, including inflammation of the tissues that line the joints, the tendons, or ligaments around the joints, and muscle strain. It is something that is very wide-ranging and includes things such as rheumatoid arthritis and even gout.
As of now, medical science has yet to find a cure to arthritis, but there are several treatment methods available to alleviate the symptoms, the most common of which is pain. Most arthritis medication prescribed is over the counter pain relievers and each year, billions of dollars are spent on over-the-counter joint pain selections that offer a wide-range of brand names, methods of treatment, and varying dosages. NSAIDs are the most common arthritis medications, available in most drugstore shelves, supermarket, and even discount or convenient stores. Prescription medications are also widely available as a therapy option that is often used to treat arthritis. While drugs may be the first type of treatment that might come to mind, there are other ways with which to treat pain from arthritis and they dont often involve a visit to the doctor.
Read Also: How To Diagnose Arthritis
Also Check: Rheumatoid Arthritis Over The Counter Medication
How Do Arthritis Pain Supplements Work
The basic mechanism behind arthritis pain supplements is tissue repair. Osteoarthritis and other medical conditions cause painful inflammation and degenerative tissue damage primarily in the joints. As the body loses its natural lubricants and protective cartilage, the nerves, muscle tissue, and bones can become inflamed and painful to the touch. Prescription pain medications usually address inflammation and swelling, but they do not always address the loss of fluids, cartilage, and bone tissue over time.
This is where arthritis pain supplements enter the picture. Natural ingredients ordinarily produced in the human body, such as glucosamine and chondroitin, are supposed to encourage the regrowth of cartilage and other protective tissues. MSM is a sulfur-based substance that penetrates inflamed tissue and helps ease inflammation. Other ingredients found in these supplements may also help improve overall bone density, restore lubricating synovial fluids, or reduce inflammation.
Is There A Best Pain Reliever For Osteoarthritis
- By Robert R. Edwards, Ph.D., Contributing Editor
ARCHIVED CONTENT: As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date each article was posted or last reviewed. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.
Osteoarthritis affects tens of millions of Americans and is a leading cause of disability and reduced quality of life across the globe. Other than joint replacement surgery, there is no known cure for OA, and most treatments focus on relief of symptoms such as pain. Often, the first step is non-medication-based approaches such as physical therapy, exercise, and weight loss. Most patients, however, will eventually use pain relievers such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs . Other kinds of medication, such as opioids, have also been tested as treatments for OA, and there is ongoing debate about what treatments are best.
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How Do Topical Arthritis Creams Work
Many people with arthritis use topical treatments alone or alongside prescription medications to dull their pain. Topical treatments, which are available in creams, gels, sprays, and roll-ons, are absorbed through the skin, and are most effective when they are rubbed on the joints that are closest to the skins surface, such as the joints in your hands or knees. As always, you should consult with your doctor on your pain management regime.
Best Cooling Gel: Tiger Balm Arthritis Tiger Balm Rub
Pump makes it easy to dispense
Some people find it works better on muscle pain than joint pain
Smell may be overpowering for some
Containing a blend of natural herbal ingredients, Tiger Balm Arthritis Rub provides safe, fast, budget-friendly relief from arthritis joint pain and muscle aches. If you’re experiencing symptoms like redness, warmth, and swelling, look for something containing like menthol and camphor, which are both ingredients in this product. These ingredients distract from the pain via cooling sensations.
Dispensed from an easy-to-use arthritis-friendly pump, this anti-inflammatory topical lotion isnt greasy and doesn’t contain skin-drying alcohol. While it’s typically used for deep pain relief, like sore muscles, it can also be used for superficial pain, like shingles. However, it shouldn’t be used on broken skin or open wounds or on irritated, inflamed, reddened, or dry skin.
Active Ingredients: Camphor and menthol | Dose: Apply to affected areas no more than three to four times daily | Uses: Temporary relief of minor muscle and/or joint pain
Patch, so it doesnt stain or make a mess
Comes in two sizes can trim to fit a particular area
Some people find the patches wont stay on their skin
These patches put all the pain-relieving ingredients right where you need them. It’s a no-muss, no-fuss product with three powerful analgesics: camphor, menthol, and methyl salicylate.
Not everyone finds relief using arnica
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Arthritis Wonder Pain Relief Cream 4 Oz Arthritis Pain Relief Cream
- 100% money-back guarantee love it, or its free.
- Targeted treatment arthritis wonder penetrates through the skin to target the source of aches and pains, giving you daily relief to do what you love.
- Easy application apply a coin-sized dollop of the non-greasy arthritis wonder cream to the affected area and massage into your skin until absorbed.
- Arthritis wonder pain cream this deep penetrating joint pain relief cream gets to work in just 5 minutes to provide true relief from arthritis and joint pain.
- Natural wogonin this topical pain relief cream contains wogonin, a natural pain-relieving ingredient taken from the skullcap herb that promotes relief from painful inflammation.
Treatment For Advanced Osteoarthritis
In its early stages, physical therapy, regular exercise, weight loss, and assistive devices can help you manage OA.
You can use these lifestyle changes alongside over-the-counter and home remedies to manage pain and inflammation, such as:
- nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
- topical creams and ointments containing NSAIDs or capsaicin
- heat or cold pads
Acupuncture may help, but theres not enough research evidence to confirm its effectiveness.
Experts no longer recommend massage therapy as a treatment for OA. However, it may help relieve stress and anxiety, which are common with conditions that involve chronic pain.
Also Check: What Rheumatoid Arthritis Feels Like
Best For After Exercising: Sportscreme Deep Penetrating Pain Relieving Rub
Extra-thick consistency, so it takes longer to rub in
Although you can certainly use Sportscreme in situations where exercise or movement wasnt involved, it is a good option for those with arthritis who may have overdone it on a particular day with walking, housework, gardening, or other activities. Or, if youre doing something that you anticipate will leave you sore, you can also use the product ahead of time. Sportscremes clean fresh scent is polarizing: some find it pleasant, while others would prefer a product with no scent at all.
Active Ingredients: Trolamine salicylate | Dose: Apply generously to the affected area. Massage into painful areas until thoroughly absorbed into skin. Repeat as necessary, but not more than four times daily. | Uses: Temporary relief of minor aches and pains
What Otc And Prescription Drugs Treat Spinal Osteoarthritis
Over-the-counter and prescription medications for spinal arthritis are usually the same as those taken to treat joint-related arthritic pain in the hips and kneesunless the diagnosis is rheumatoid or another type of inflammatory arthritis. For patients with symptoms of pain or numbness affecting the arms or legs, a may be considered.
Today, people with spinal arthritis have access to different types of pain medications that can be taken or applied to relieve pain. Some require a doctor’s prescription, some do not. However, do not assume that just because a drug is available without a prescription, or over the counter, that it is safe for everyone.
Also Check: Things To Help Arthritis In Hands
Best For Arthritic Pain: Good Sense Strongest Over The Counter Pain Relief For Arthritis
Good Sense line of relief comes in a pretty wide variety of styles, so you can definitely find one that suits your individual preferences and needs. The Good Sense Strongest Over The Counter Pain Relief For Arthritis works well for a low price, can shop for the best price and it is very effective. Extended release caplets each provide 650 mg of acetaminophen, pain reliever and fever reducer, and contain no aspirin. This product may also be used to temporarily relieve other minor aches and pains due to.
The relief is used for the temporary relief of minor pain of arthritis. Above all, the good sense strongest overthe counter pain relief for arthritis is a pain reliever and fever reducer for adults.
Most buyers agree that the relief is great for chronic daily back pain when taken regularly every 8 hours. And, they strongly agree that the relief is basically a generic version of the tylenol 8hr. Moreover, they strongly agree that this time release capsule worked great for that long seated kind of pain. Overall, at the price, they believe that they got a steal of a deal with it.
- This works well for arthritis, muscle aches, and period cramps.
- This is probably made in China.
- This has a child-resistant cap plus this product is gluten free.
- This is an excellent OTC medication for back/joint/arthritis pain.
What Else You Can Do To Help Relieve Joint Pain
Although strains and sprains can often be the cause of painful joints, there are other causes to watch out for, including cold weather, along with gout, bursitis and arthritis.
- Take regular exercise – it helps build the muscles that support the joint, helping with pain. Choose gentle low impact exercises such as swimming and speak to your GP first if you’re not used to exercise
- Keep to a healthy weight – excess weight can put more stress on joints such as your knees
- Pace your activities and don’t do too much in one go
- Keep warm – many people find their joints hurt more in the cold and wet, so keep well wrapped up
- Alongside your painkillers you can also use a TENS* machine, like the LloydsPharmacy joint pain reliever, and other drug-free products, such as hot and cold packs. To find out more about how TENS machines work and their benefits
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Advil Pm Pain Reliever/nighttime Sleep Aid Coated Caplet 200mg Ibuprofen 38mg
- Safe, gentle & non habit forming: the two active ingredients in advil pm products, ibuprofen and diphenhydramine, have a long history of safe and effective treatment when used as directed.
- To use: for ages 12 and up, take 2 pills at bedtime to relieve occasional sleeplessness associated with minor aches and pains, advil pm should not be used by children under 12, do not take more than 2 pills in 24 hours, read all product labeling prior to use, actual packaging may vary.
- Patented, dual layer caplet: advil pm is the only brand offering an exclusive bi layer patented formula, each caplet combines the #1 pain reliever with the #1 soothing sleep aid that helps you relieve pain and fall asleep.
- Pain relief: advil is the worlds #1 selling otc pain reliever providing safe and effective pain relief for over 30 years.
- Fall asleep faster & stay asleep longer : advil pm coated caplets relieve occasional sleeplessness while soothing minor aches and pains, don’t let pain get in the way of a restful nights sleep.
Nsaids Vs Opioids: Was There A Clear Winner
A recent study compared oral NSAIDs and oral opioids for relief of osteoarthritis pain. Researchers at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Womens Hospital performed a meta-analysis . They included clinical trials in which patients with knee osteoarthritis were chosen at random to receive treatment that lasted at least 2 months.
The researchers carefully chose which studies to include, and two members of the team independently reviewed each study and extracted the data. They selected studies that used a common, well-validated, and widely-accepted measure of pain . Data from over 5,500 patients were included, and the researchers found that, on average, oral NSAID treatment reduced pain by around 18 points on the WOMAC scale. Treatment with less potent oral opioids also reduced pain by around 18 points, and potent oral opioids reduced pain by around 19 points on the WOMAC scale. Since, on average, patients started out with pain ratings of around 50-60 out of 100, each of these medications achieved around a 30% reduction in patients pain.
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Our Choice For The Best Medicine For Arthritis Pain
Choosing the best medicines for arthritis pain is not easy as the products on this list have quite the same advantages and disadvantages. However, among the five, the one that has the best effect is Penetrex Pain Relief Therapy. It may not be as strong as Aleve or as popular as the other brands on the list, but it works effectively and efficiently.
One of the things that make this a strong contender for the best medicines for arthritis pain is the fact that it does not contain complicated ingredients, the ones that are difficult to read. This gives us a guarantee that applying the medication will not cause any harm or adverse reactions.
Additionally, the product is not difficult to use. In fact, it can be applied in a matter of seconds. Moreover, after a few minutes, you will already feel it making its way to that part of your body that is badly bruised or in pain. Moreover, it works quickly. No need to wait for hours or days.
Best of all, Penetrex Pain Relief Therapy rightfully belongs to the list of the best medicines for arthritis pain because it helps eliminate and treat the pain. Unlike other medicines that offer temporary or superficial relief, this arthritis medication does not simply hide or mask the pain. Instead, it heals and then repairs. So Penetrex offers complete relief and healing from whatever arthritis pain that may be hounding you.