Swimming for joint pain relief
Swimming is one of the best ways to get substantial joint pain relief, provided you don’t have any specific contraindications for the same. In very severe and advanced cases of arthritis, swimming may not be advisable given chances of aggravation of the symptoms. You must talk with your doctor to discuss whether swimming can be a beneficial option for you in achieving the required joint pain relief. There are several different strokes you can do for swimming; some may be good for you to do with the capability of producing instant effects. The water resistance makes the workout more efficient. Some clients say one-hour of exercise in the water is like two hours on the ground.
A swim style is just a mode that one moves about a water body. These activities are performed using your trunk, arms and legs against the current of the water, which will cause you to push through the water and will help your joints working their way to attain a dynamic rhythm, in turn reducing the pain sensation. The wise way to perform these special swim strokes is smoothly and effortlessly.
The crawl is a very popular swim style amongst the arthritis patients and is done in the prone position. It is done by using over-arm strokes. The aim is to get over the top of water and some light fluttering activities with your feet helps in bringing you to the surface level. Your head stays on top of the water with side-to-side movements of the arms and legs alternating to provide buoyancy to the joints.
Breast stroke is done in the prone position by spreading the arms in front of you and bringing them back to the level of the shoulders. You propel yourself across the surface of the water by using alternating frog kicks. This stroke is not recommended if one is suffering from significant knee joint pain; it may even worsen that as the efforts done by knee joints are considerable.
Butterfly stroke is performed in the prone position and combines an upward swinging, round motion of both of the arms at the same time along with kicking to simulate a butterfly’s flight. This stroke requires considerable practice in being able to do it effectively and effortlessly. If you are not an expert swimmer, you would be requiring professional guidance in mastering this stroke.
Various other strokes are also used in to achieve significant joint pain relief viz. Dog Paddle, Sidestroke, Backstroke and Freestyle.
Hydrotherapy has been known to be having therapeutic potential in joint pain for quite a long time. Another appreciable thing about swimming is that being in the water helps in diminishing the swelling in your joints, which can give you much joint pain relief as well. You must take a professional opinion from your doctor and allied physiotherapy team to decide which swimming stroke would work best for you.
Whatever style swim stroke you choose to use it is essential to ensure the regularity and avoid over indulgence.
Pain And Joint Relief: Pros And Cons Of NSAIDs
Few people with arthritis would be willing to stop taking a medication that works in the setting of pain and joint relief, especially when nothing else has. But what if joint pain and stiffness are inevitable if you don’t take the medication, yet heart problems could occur if you do? The worrying news that popular arthritis drugs (specifically the NSAIDs and COX-2 selective inhibitors) could cause a heart attack or cerebrovascular accident or aggravate blood pressure has left some patients wondering whether they should keep taking them to treat their arthritis. Health officials say that, as with any drug, only you and your doctor can determine the level of risk that is acceptable with pain and joint relief medications currently available to treat arthritis.
Data from clinical trials showed that cyclooxygenase-2 selective agents, better known as COX-2 selective inhibitors, may be associated with an increased risk of serious cardiovascular problems, especially when used in high doses or for long periods in patients with existing cardiovascular disease, or in very high-risk situations, such as immediately after heart surgery.
Traditional NSAIDs, used popularly in pain and joint relief inhibit both COX-1 and COX-2. Unfortunately, this non-selective inhibition of both COX enzymes also inhibits those prostaglandins involved in some of the important “housekeeping” functions of the body, such as helping blood to clot and protecting the stomach from ulceration.
It’s this non-selective inhibition of both enzymes by aspirin and other non-selective NSAIDs that increases the risk of stomach ulcers and consequent bleeding. In theory, the newer COX-2 selective inhibitors used in pain and joint relief only inhibit the enzyme involved in inflammation, leaving the other functions alone.
The downside of the COX-2 selective inhibitors is that they appear to be associated, particularly when used for many consecutive months to years, with an increased risk of cardiovascular problems. Moreover, COX-2 selective inhibitors, like other NSAIDs, don’t influence the course of the disease, which doctors say is a common misconception among patients because these drugs only provide for symptom relief. Coincidentally, preliminary results from a three-year trial on the non-selective NSAID naproxen also suggested that long-term use may be associated with an increased risk for cardiovascular problems. This has led to switching of many doctors to relatively safer formulations in opioid group to ensure pain and joint relief.
As for the safety of future arthritis treatments, experience has shown that the full magnitude of some potential risks of all drugs has not always emerged during the safety and effectiveness studies conducted before the FDA can approve a drug. The FDA advises physicians to consider the evolving information on any medication in evaluating the risks and benefits of these drugs in individual patients aiming at pain and joint relief.
Joints Pain Relief: Role Of Steroids
To obtain joints pain relief in severe cases, sometimes corticosteroid medications are indicated and prescribed — including cortisone, hydrocortisone and prednisone. These medications have great potential in the treatment of a variety of conditions, from rashes to lupus to asthma to connective tissue disorders. But corticosteroids come with their share of side effects. These medications have to be taken in optimum dosages and duration as advised by the doctor. You can take steps to reduce these medications’ side effects by working on your doctor’s instructions so that the benefits of treatment prevail over the risks.
Corticosteroids mimic the effects of hormones your body produces naturally in your adrenal glands. When prescribed in doses that exceed your body’s usual levels, corticosteroids repress inflammation, which can reduce the signs and symptoms of joint pain and produce significant relief.
For joints pain relief, corticosteroids can be taken via a lot of routes. The drugs are front-line treatments for rheumatoid arthritis, various arthropathies, asthma, allergies and many other conditions. Corticosteroids can be taken by the below-mentioned routes
- Oral formulation. Tablets, capsules or syrups help treat the inflammation and provide much needed joints pain relief.
- Topically. Creams, ointments, and roll-ons can help in attaining alleviation of pain.
- By injection. This form is used to treat such signs and symptoms as the pain and inflammation of diseased joints.
Because oral corticosteroids are absorbed in the body, they affect your entire body and this form is the most likely to cause significant side effects. Side effects depend on the dose of medication you receive along with the nature and extent of associated co-morbidities. There can be chances of development of elevated pressure in the eyes (glaucoma), fluid retention, causing swelling in your lower legs, increased blood pressure, mood swings, weight gain, bone weakening etc. It is important to follow up with your doctor to get frequently checked for development of any side effects.
When taking oral corticosteroids longer term, you may experience the development of cataracts, high blood sugar, which can trigger or worsen diabetes, increased risk of infections, loss of calcium from bones, which can lead to bone weakening, menstrual irregularities, easy bruising, and slower wound healing
Injected corticosteroids can cause side effects near the site of the injection. Side effects may include pain, infection, shrinking of soft tissue and loss of color in the skin. Doctors usually limit corticosteroid injections to no more than three or four a year.
Despite their side effects, corticosteroid drugs remain an important medical treatment to attain joints pain relief, where indicated. When you’re on corticosteroid medications for a prolonged period, talk to your doctor about ways to minimize side effects. Sometimes dosages are titrated as per your body’s response. Steroids are never stopped abruptly as it disturbs the body’s physiological functions. It is imperative to follow up with your doctor regularly when taking steroids for joints pain relief.
Joint Pain Treatment: What are the goals?
Joint pain is a crippling physical condition that severely hampers a person’s life. Many people with joint pain are frustrated because there is no cure for the disease. They feel the treatment is a dead-end. Learning to live with pain and physical limitations is difficult. There are many joint pain treatment options available. While it’s important to understand your options and discuss your treatment plan with your doctor, it’s also necessary to understand the goals of arthritis treatment.
Any joint can be affected by the arthritis, however joint pain treatment plan aims at diagnosing specific type of arthritis. Recognizing early symptoms and getting appropriate treatment helps to control them.
A joint is a juncture where two or more bones come together for movement. Normal joint function is defined as a joint’s ability to move throughout its range of motion, bear weight, and perform work. Joint pain and other symptoms can interfere with normal joint function. Treatment is aimed at improving your range of motion and your ability to perform usual daily activities.
Overweight people are at high risk for developing arthritis, especially knee osteoarthritis. Studies have shown that overweight women have 4 times the risk and overweight men have 5 times the risk of developing knee osteoarthritis when compared to people who are normal body weight. Maintaining your ideal body weight cuts your chances of developing osteoarthritis and may improve symptoms if you already have it.
Healthy habits blossom into a healthy lifestyle. Your joint pain treatment plan will contain schedules of regular exercise, weight control, stress management, rest, smoking cessation, and pain management. You must get better sleep and should not indulge in smoking or alcohol intake.
You should be motivated enough to deal with the anxious and frustrating moments. Remember, every little step of progress is a vital one which aims to propel you towards your goal. joint pain treatment plan has to be decided in mutual discussion with you, your doctor and allied team of professionals.
You should be having adequate disease information, so that you can notice any potential sign of significance during any time of your joint pain treatment process and discuss it with the doctor. High amount of compliance is required with respect to the medication intake, sticking to exercise schedule and attending follow up sessions with your doctor. You must include a multivitamin in your diet and should get a customized diet chart prepared by your joint pain treatment team, to take care of your nutritional needs.
Joint Pain Remedy: Role of Massage
Aside from its stature as an effective and enjoyable joint pain remedy, massage is one of remedies that have fewest side effects. Manipulating skin, underlying surface tissue and muscle through massage for therapeutic purposes and relief of pain in joints is a well regarded practice that has prevailed for centuries. Any technique that uses pressure, either fixed or moving in therapeutic pressure, to manipulate an individual’s muscles and connective tissue can be called massage therapy. It is a very old joint pain remedy and has many takers across the globe. To reduce skin friction and provide smooth strokes across the person’s skin, massage oils and lubricants are used.
The prime function of massage is to relax the stiff muscles, to provide relief in painful joints, and rejuvenate the body by stimulating its inherent healing ability. Massage therapies achieve this goal by stroking lightly away from the heart or deeply towards the heart, using the fingers and thumbs to knead muscle and tissue in circles, and by stimulating muscles on a deeper level. Athletes have their version of Swedish massage they simply call it sports massage, which has been in use since ages. Massage is not effective in eliminating any underlying joint disorder however symptomatic relief is obtained largely.
Certain segment of believers consider that massage results in reducing inflammation, improving tissue oxygenation, softening of scar tissue, the dissolution of adhesions, the healing of damaged muscles, reducing accumulation of lactic acid in muscles, and causing overall increased relaxation of muscle fibers. Regular massage is said to help reduce nervous energy, causing the body-mind axis to become tranquil. It is believed that the nervous system benefits from the repetitive nature of massage, and the rhythm it establishes helps promote overall harmony and balance by increasing pain threshold of nociceptors. A typical massage session lasts anywhere from 15 to 90 minutes, and sessions take place in a comfortable and quiet environment.
National and international organizations have yet to establish consistent standards for massage therapy training or certification; therefore, training requirements are not established with any scientific base. Before beginning any form of massage therapy, ask for references and conduct a thorough investigation of the therapist’s qualifications and experience. Consulting with your doctor before engaging the services of a massage therapist to treat joint pain is the best way to proceed. Your overall joint pain remedy plan can well incorporate massage therapy if there are no absolute or relative contraindications to it.
Joint Pain Remedies: The Best Used Measures
Natural joint pain relief offers a safer and sometimes more effective alternative to synthetic drugs. Joint pain remedies vary from herbs to massage to modern medicines with much research backing the successful findings. Understanding the risks of using the leading prescription drug frequently aids in the decision to seek natural joint pain relief. No treatment either synthetic or natural is fully effective all the time. Careful research for the right solution is important for overall health and in establishing effective joint pain remedies.
The most popular and widely used group of synthetic drug on the market today is NSAID, used to help people manage the pain. Former versions of this drug inhibited all the COX-2, which was seen as a bleak factor owing to its gastric erosive effects. New forms of this drug offer a better option only destroying the bad COX-2, but still create the same digestive problem; however it opened the door for natural medicine to be an effective alternative. Short-term pain relief is not a long-term answer unless taking drugs for a lifetime is acceptable. Surgical option is used as the best joint pain remedies in very advanced cases where joints have been virtually crippled and have remained amenable to medical treatment.
Alternative treatments include herbal tea, change in diet, and identifying food allergies. Boswellin is an ancient herb, renowned as a good Joint Pain Remedies, is highly effective in providing natural joint pain relief. Holy basil is yet another time test cure dating back many thousands of years. All of these treatments are found in the health food store in capsule form. ginger, turmeric, rosemary, or oregano used in cooking also aids in providing natural joint pain relief. Many recipes call for these ingredients and are readily available at the store or local nursery. White willow bark is another effective choice in joint pain treatments. It can be found in health food stores and dates back to Hippocrates as an effective treatment. Red grape leaves offer the same blocking of COX-2 that causes joint pain.
Eliminating carbohydrates from the diet will decrease joint size almost immediately. Taking away a trigger of inflammation can eliminate the need for drugs or surgery. Increasing the diet with foods containing high levels of Omega-3 fatty acids is one of the effective joint remedies available. Drinking green tea instead of coffee reduces the irritation to the joints due to eliminating toxins and reducing the COX-2 found in coffee. All caffeinated beverages should be avoided for optimal success. Preservatives and artificial sweeteners may also irritate the problem.
An overall healthy lifestyle will help anyone to feel better and decrease the chance of disease and disorder. Proper nutrition feeds the body the nutrients a person needs to successfully overcome most health problems. A multivitamin is a good place to start when changing a diet plan. It will start the body off with a lot of the needed nutrients, which is a form of natural joint pain relief. This might include more protein, calcium, vitamin C and D, and even simply more vegetables.
Relief from Joint Pain: Role of Meditation
There is no way one can disregard the role of meditation in the armory of natural pain remedies. The mind-body practice of meditation is an age-old discipline and while a variety of meditation techniques exist, the general goal of this holistic healing practice is to use focused attention, posture and nonresistance to distractions to quiet the mind and in turn cause relief from joint pain. Research into the effects meditation has on the body and its impact on overall health and well-being are in the pipeline, so that more can be known about its mode of functioning in providing relief from joint pain.
To ensure you get the best treatment possible, take the time to consult with your doctor about any alternative healing modalities you are currently using. The goal of meditation is to focus one’s attention to quiet the mind. As the perception of pain occurs in mind, if one is able to increase the threshold of pain sensation by meditation, the perceived severity would lessen considerable. This is accomplished in many forms of meditation by simply observing one’s thoughts, feelings and body sensations without judging them or trying to interfere with them. Soon, the mind begins to quiet and the body relaxes as both physical and mental stress is released. The more one meditates, the easier it becomes to deal with any physical pain.
There are a few particular essentials to a successful meditation practice regardless of the technique used. A location where there is a minimal amount of distraction is best, a posture that is comfortable to hold and focused attention. An easy way to quiet the mind is to focus attention on something other than thinking. One can repeat a special word or words called a mantra, observe an object such as a candle flame, or simply watch the breath. A substantial number of people resort to meditation practice to get relief from joint pain, as this is the most holistic way.
Many disease conditions, including joint pain, anxiety, depression, and inflammation, respond well to meditation. It is an excellent practice for improving overall physical, mental-emotional, and spiritual health without any fear of side effects. It is unlikely that meditation can do any harm to any body and once your doctor agrees for it, you should try it with full optimism.
Meditation is a powerful, self-care modality because of its ability to harmonize, strengthen, and balance all of the body’s systems and reduce the perception of pain in the body. Beginning a regular and consistent meditation practice and sticking with it is easy when you start out with a short, 10-minutes session. Slowly increase this time to around 30 minutes a day to experience the enormously powerful benefits that result from meditating every day. One of the most holistic methods of obtaining relief from joint pain, meditation has been in practice since ancient times and it’s use has been increasing in today’s world.
Joint Pain Reliever
Various joint pain conditions frequently lead to the development of an incapacitating state leading to the requirement of pain killer use. There are two main groups of pain medications.
- Analgesics – these are medications used specifically in treating pain. Analgesics include opioids, non-opioids, and combination medications.
- Adjuvant medications are those with primary uses other than pain relief but help with pain relief. These include anticonvulsants, muscle relaxants, and antidepressants.
For taking care of severe joint pain, opioid analgesics are administered, but there are considerable concerns about addiction, side effects, tolerance, and potential for regulatory action. It is recommended by the World Health Organization to start pain treatment with non-opioid medications such as aspirin, acetaminophen (Tylenol), or anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen, diclofenac, or naproxen.
Opioids and combination drugs are the most potent agents available today for patients with chronic pain. An opioid formulation is superior in its efficacy to NSAIDs and is thought to be a better pain reliever. Opioid medications include hydrocodone, hydromorphone, methadone, fentanyl, methadone, buprenorphine, meperidine, oxycodone, and codeine. The American Academy of Pain Medicine along with the World Health Organization has endorsed narcotic medications where the pain is crippling enough to have caused a severe disturbance in routine activities of life. Synthetic joint pain reliever, derived from an opioid is usually given in crippling joint pain.
Opioids are made from opium, which is a grainy, bitter powder from the seedpod of the poppy flower. Opium is reputed to be a potent joint pain reliever. In these times, most opioid preparations are synthetic. Their common route of administration is in oral and injection form. Meticulous dosage titration is required while using any opioid agents as a joint pain reliever. Common adverse reactions in patients taking opioids for pain relief include nausea and vomiting, drowsiness, itching, dry mouth, miosis, and constipation. Infrequent adverse reactions in patients taking opioids for pain relief include dose-related respiratory depression (especially with more potent opioids), confusion, hallucinations, delirium, urticaria, hypothermia, bradycardia/tachycardia, orthostatic hypotension, dizziness, headache, urinary retention, ureteric or biliary spasm, muscle rigidity, and myoclonus.
Opioids have been known to cause tolerance. Tolerance is more pronounced for some effects than for others; tolerance occurs quickly to the effects on mood, itching, urinary retention, and respiratory depression, but occurs more slowly to the analgesia and other physical side effects. Psychological addiction is more common in people taking opioids recreationally and is rare in patients who take opioids appropriately to treat severe joint pain. With the reputation of the best joint pain reliever, an opioid formulation is the last medical resort in the management of acute and severe painful joint conditions.
Joint Pain Relief: Surgical options
In maximizing the chances of joint recovery, sometimes surgical options have to be evaluated and intervened. There are specific indications for opting for surgical interventions and the most notable ones include joint destruction, severely debilitating joint pain due to surgically correctable causes e.g. loose body impaction in joint, tendon tear, etc. As the primary pathology is reversed, Joint Pain Relief is ensured. If and when you can no longer manage the pain or deal with the loss of mobility caused by your severe arthritis through non-surgical treatments, surgery may offer considerable relief. However, this modality of treatment has to be decided by your doctor who can discuss with you in-depth your surgical options. Some of the most common surgical interventions recommended to joint pain sufferers are listed below.
Total Joint Replacement: People with advanced symptoms of arthritis that cannot be managed with medications or physical therapy are often candidates for total joint replacement surgery. This is indicated for the people whose joints are practically destroyed or have been significantly limited by disease activity. With total joint replacement, the old joint is surgically removed and a new synthetic surface is put in place.
Arthroscopy: In some joint conditions, small pieces of cartilage tend to wear away from the joint surface and float inside the joint, causing inflammation, irritation, and pain. In certain cases of arthritis, your doctor may suggest arthroscopy to try to remove some of the indwelling loose bodies, chips, or debris and provide Joint Pain Relief. Arthroscopy is a minimally-invasive surgical procedure in which degenerated cartilage is trimmed and, reducing the source of inflammation resulting in significant results.
Joint Fusion: Patients who undergo fusion regain strength in the fused joint, but they lose mobility – the joint doesn’t move, it is an option for patients with co-morbid diseases that would significantly impact the potential success of joint replacement.
Cartilage Transplant: Healthy cartilage from a non-weight-bearing area of the joint can be transplanted to another area where weight-bearing cartilage has been significantly damaged, causing pain and limitations. However, in most cases of advanced joint diseases, the degeneration and wear of cartilage involve the majority of the joint surface, and cartilage transplant is not a viable option left.
Osteotomy: It is an operation that cuts the bone, either above or below the joint, and re-aligns the joint to a better position thus curbing the previous limitations restricting the joint mobility, and causing pain.
Joint Pain Cure: Role of Exercise
To ensure an effective joint pain cure, exercises are of vital importance in most cases. Effective supervised and customized exercises plan help in increasing energy levels, increasing bone and muscle strength, helping with weight control, decreasing depression and fatigue, and serving to improve self-esteem and self-confidence.
Exercise is important for healthy joints. Moving your joints daily helps keep them fully mobile and maintains adequate blood and bone ratio of calcium concentration. Strengthening the surrounding muscles helps support the joints. Also, flexible joint movement transports nutrients and waste products to and from the cartilage, thus enhancing joint longevity. There are different types of exercise and it’s important for you to understand their relative importance and specific role, so that you may be convenient with your joint pain cure plan.
Range-of-motion Exercises: These exercises are gentle stretching exercises that aim to move each joint through its normal maximum range of motion. These exercises are advocated to be done daily to help keep joints fully mobile and prevent stiffness and contracture deformities arising from non-use. Range-of-motion exercises are important for patients suffering from joint pain who shy away from moving their joints adequately due to associated fear of pain. Some people believe that normal daily activities take joints through their full range of motion but this is hardly the truth.
Strengthening Exercises: These exercises result in efficient joint pain cure by increasing muscle strength. Strong muscles help support the associated joints, making them more functional, stable and helping you move with less pain. The two types of strengthening exercises are isometric and isotonic. Isometric exercises involve strengthening the muscles, without moving the joints. These exercises are especially useful when joint motion is impaired. Isotonic exercises involve strengthening the muscles by causing joint movement.
Endurance Exercises: Endurance exercises are physical activities that bring your heart rate up to your optimal target level for at least 20 to 30 minutes. Many arthritis patients who regularly perform endurance exercises find they can increase physical strength, develop a better mental attitude and improve joint pain symptoms.
You should always discuss exercise plans and goals with your doctor before starting a routine or program. The amount and form of exercise recommended for each individual will vary depending on the type of arthritis, joints involved, levels of inflammation, stability of joints, and other physical limitations. Yoga, warm water exercises, Tai Chi, Bicycling are some other advocated forms of exercises known to ensure Joint Pain Cure, however, you must consult with your doctor before starting any of these.