Joints tend to wear down from constant use as people get older. This results in osteoarthritis (OA), a degenerative joint condition that causes chronic pain. OA usually affects the joints found in your wrists, knees, arms, legs, ankles, and hips. If you think you might have OA, it’s important to recognize the symptoms as early as possible. Below are a few things you might experience:
- Pain and tenderness in the joints
- Loss of flexibility and stiffness
- Unusual sensations such as numbness or tingling
If you’ve experienced any of the following symptoms for longer than two weeks, you might need to undergo chronic pain treatment with a licensed doctor. This will allow you to receive a suitable treatment plan and medications to help ease the discomfort. The earlier you catch it, the earlier you can start treating it.
Besides seeking medical treatment, there are also a few things you can do on your own to manage osteoarthritis pain. The following are a few proven remedies you can try out yourself:
Take an Epsom salt bath
Epsom salt contains magnesium which is anti-inflammatory and provides relief for sore muscles and stiff joints. All you need to do is run a warm bath (the optimal temperature would be around 102°F or 38°C) then add in two cups of Epsom salt. Soak in the bath for around 30 minutes.
Do some light exercise
Engaging in physical activity to minimize pain might seem counterintuitive to you, but it’s actually an effective way to ease inflammation and pain. Regular light and low impact exercise like walking, swimming, yoga, and stretching can keep your joints flexible and mobile. You’ll also be able to lose weight, which will ease the stress placed on your joints.
Meditation and relaxation exercises might not get rid of the physical pain, but it can help you gain better control over your body and mind. You’ll be able to tolerate your chronic pain symptoms better while improving your mental health.
Make use of splints and braces
There are several joint support devices you can use to help ease your pain such as braces, canes, and splints. Not only will they be able to keep you flexible, but they can also keep you safe from injury.
Ease pain with cold or hot packs
Cold and hot packs are capable of stimulating blood circulation and reduce swelling. When applied to the affected areas, both of these solutions can greatly minimize joint pain and muscle stiffness.
Maintain a healthy diet
The best diet to address arthritis pain symptoms is one that’s balanced and contains anti-inflammatory properties. One example of such a diet is the Mediterranean diet which consists of whole grains, fish, herbs, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and beans. Poultry, dairy, and eggs are eaten in moderate amounts, while red meat is eaten occasionally, if at all. You can also add in an adequate amount of healthy fats and healthy oils which are found in things like avocados, canola oil, and olive oil.
Osteoarthritis might be a difficult and uncomfortable condition to have to deal with, but it’s quite manageable once you know what to do. These remedies will help you ease your pain symptoms, allowing you to retain or boost your quality of life again.