Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes joint inflammation and pain. This occurs when the immune system does not work properly. It ends up attacking the synovium, which is the lining of the joints. Rheumatoid arthritis affects the ankles, knees, and hands. Most often if it affects a joint on your left hand, it will affect the same joint on your right hand. There are some cases where it can affect other parts of the body.
Research to treat rheumatoid arthritis (RA) using drugs is ongoing. However, there is no present cure for rheumatoid arthritis. Doctors currently tell patients to do the following for their well being:
- Get proper rest
- Eat a wholesome diet
- Stress control
Over-the-counter medications and remedies may help relieve pain and decrease inflammation. Medications can also help alleviate symptoms, stop damage, or help put RA in remission.
Below you will find 8 ways to help alleviate your RA pain.
Getting enough sleep is essential for everybody, but it is particularly crucial for those who have RA. Try to get at least eight hours of sleep. Getting proper rest can help with your RA symptoms.
If your sleep is being impacted because of stress, guided imagery, deep breathing exercises, and muscular relaxation exercises can help you unwind. Meditation, hypnosis, and massage can help alleviate anxiety and stress.
If you are dealing with insomnia, be sure that you speak to your doctor, but also try some of the smartphone apps that can assist you with getting to sleep quicker during the night. If you believe you might suffer from sleep apnea, then speak with your doctor for diagnosis and a treatment program.
Exercise is a good way to fight fatigue, strengthen muscles, and increase range of movement. Low impact exercise options are a good way to get some exercise. Examples of low impact exercises include: gentle stretching, swimming, walking pool, and water rowing.
A physical therapist can show you exercises that can help.
Tai chi is a Chinese martial art that combines slow, gentle motions with consciousness and breathing. It moves the brain, body, and soul. One analysis indicates that tai chi may improve function in people with RA.
Topical lotions, gels, and creams may be rubbed directly onto the skin to help alleviate painful joints. Since the skin absorbs the components, you might experience temporary relief of minor pain.
For the best results, start looking for products which include salicylates capsaicin, camphor, or menthol.
Some plant oils are considered to decrease pain and morning stiffness related to RA. Evening primrose oil includes an essential fatty acid known as gamma-linolenic acid and might offer some relief.
Check with your doctor before you use plant oils, because some can harm your liver or interfere with medications. Side effects include nausea, nausea, gas, and headache.
Research has revealed that fish oil supplements can decrease pain and stiffness caused by RA.
Check with your doctor before incorporating fish oil nutritional supplements to your daily diet, since they may interfere with certain medications and increase the probability of bleeding or bruising. Some people complain of belching nausea, and a bad taste in their mouth.
Heat and cold
Apply an ice pack to joints that are inflamed to help alleviate them. Cold may help pain and relax muscle spasms.
A bath or shower may irritate them if you are experiencing aching muscles.
Consult your doctor or physical therapist on how to best use cold and heat therapy.
Aspirin or over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) can offer temporary relief of pain and swelling. NSAIDs include naproxen and aspirin.
All prescription NSAIDs possess a warning that the medications might increase the chances of experiencing a heart attack, stroke, or gut bleeding.While these medications alleviate pain and distress, they do not alter the course of RA.
These following medications are used to treat rheumatoid arthritis:
- Hydroxychloroquine: might take up to 3 weeks to take effect
- Methotrexate: enhances the immune system
- Sulfasalazine: suppresses the immune response
- Minocycline: used because of its anti-inflammatory properties
- Oral corticosteroids: rapid, short-term symptom relief
Splints, braces, and throat collars may stabilize and help inflamed joints. Customized shoes or shoe inserts can offer aid for unstable joints at the ankle and foot. Canes and crutches may make it easier for you to walk.
Surgery might have the ability to correct deformities and help alleviate pain in RA patients. The most common operation for RA is complete joint replacement, such as shoulders, hips, and knees.Surgery alleviate pressure and also can fix damage.
Rheumatoid Arthritis is an autoimmune disease that can change your entire life. It impacts the way you do things on a daily basis. Even though there is no cure, there are amazing treatments that can help you with your way of life. If you suffer from Rheumatoid Arthritis then talk to your doctor about the best treatment options for you.