Joints are the connections between your bones that offer support to your body in addition to helping you move. One of the common problems that affects millions of people around the world is joint pain or arthralgia, which can be brought about by injuries or diseases such as arthritis, gout and bursitis. Joint pain can be excruciating and debilitating at the same time. It can develop in any part of the body and is found to be more common in older people. Although severe joint pain requires proper diagnosis and treatment, mild pain can be eliminated with the help of several home remedies.
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Remedies for joint pain
Many people opt for prescription medications and pain killers to treat joint pain. The dangers to using these medications are that some of them may cause side effects and further problems. There are however, many natural remedies that can be tried at home to get relief from this painful condition. Some of these effective remedies are explained below:
Regular exercise is a great way to not only reduce joint pain but also to maintain overall health and well being. Continuous movements of the joints help to improve their flexibility and strength. Exercises like swimming or water aerobics are considered to be better than walking and running as they do not add more stress to the joints.
Lose some body weight
The weight of an individual is one of the key factors that can cause joint pain. This is because too much weight puts a lot of pressure on your joints, particularly in area like your hips, knees, and feet. Losing weight helps in reducing the stress on your joints, which in turn decreases pain, increases your mobility and also prevents the reoccurrence of the pain.
Acupuncture is a Chinese treatment method in which thin needles are inserted into particular points on your body. This process is believed to restore balance by redirecting energies in your body. Acupuncture is a great way to reduce joint pain but make sure to go to a professional acupuncturist.
Hot and cold therapy
Applying hot and cold therapy over the affected area is very effective in providing relief from joint pain. Hot therapy can be done by using a heating pad or an electric blanket. Warm baths or showers can also help in easing joint pain. Cold therapy can be done by applying a gel ice pack on to the painful joints.
Turmeric is a spice well known for its anti-inflammatory properties. It contains a chemical called curcumin that is found to be effective in reducing joint pain.
Omega 3 fatty acids
Eating foods rich in omega 3 fatty acids not only helps in improving your overall health but is also good for reducing joint pain. It helps in reducing the pain and stiffness of the joints.
The teas and extracts obtained from the roots and bark of cat’s claw is used in certain countries as a remedy for joint pain and inflammation. According to studies, the sterols and tannins found in the extract may be responsible for easing the pain.
Thyme is a Mediterranean herb that has powerful anti-inflammatory properties. Studies suggest that the herb may inhibit expression of NF-kb, a protein transcription factor that regulates inflammation.
Onions are highly rich in a flavonoid antioxidant known as quercetin that may help in soothing joint pain. Onion tea is made by boiling a large peeled onion in a cup of water for about 15 to 20 minutes. You can also add lemon or ginger to improve the taste of the tea. Drinking this liquid is a good remedy for joint pain.
Apply extra virgin olive oil
Lubricating your joints with extra virgin olive oil is a great way to relieve the pain. Extra virgin olive oil contains an important compound known as oleocanthal that has the ability to inhibit the inflammatory enzymes COX-1 and COX-2. Rub a few drops of olive oil onto the affected area two times a day and massage thoroughly.
Epsom salt soak
Epsom salt is rich in magnesium sulfate, which is a naturally occurring mineral that has been used for several years as a pain remedy. Add half a cup of Epsom salt to large bowl of warm water and soak the painful joints in the water. The magnesium in magnesium sulfate helps in relaxing your muscles and nerve endings, thus providing relief from pain and stiffness. According to The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, people who consumed a diet high in magnesium had improved bone density and stronger bones.
Blackstrap molasses is an age old remedy for getting relief from joint pain. It is rich in minerals like calcium, magnesium and potassium that play a major role in strengthening the bones as well as in controlling the functions of the muscles and nerve.
The leaves of dandelion have linoleic and linolenic acid in them, which according to studies have potent anti-inflammatory properties. Linoleic acid helps in the production of prostaglandin, which reduces inflammation and regulates immune responses. Dandelion leaves can be eaten as they are or can be brewed into a tea.
White willow tree
The bark of white willow tree is found to be an effective remedy for joint pain and arthritis. It contains a compound known as salicin that is converted inside the body into salicylic acid, which is similar to the active ingredient acetyl salicylic acid found in aspirin.
Peppermint and eucalyptus oil
Both eucalyptus oil and peppermint have pain relieving properties and hence a combination of them is excellent in reducing joint pain. Mix together a few drops of peppermint oil, eucalyptus oil and any carrier oil. Massage this oil on to the pain affected area.
An ointment made using cayenne pepper is one of the most effective remedies for joint pain. It contains capsaicin that is found to inhibit the neurotransmitter known as substance P, which is associated with the transmission of pain signals to your brain.
The extract or gum resin of the frankincense plant has anti-inflammatory and pain-killing properties, which makes it a wonderful remedy for joint pain. Frankincense reduces inflammation by making the white blood cells inactive. White blood cells are responsible for causing the swelling and inflammation.
Cherries have been used by the Japanese for several centuries for treating arthritis and joint pain. The cherries are boiled in to sweet syrup and then given to the patients. This fruit is rich in magnesium, which as previously mentioned is beneficial in reducing inflammation and pain.
The leaves of aloe vera produce a gel like substance that is used for treating several conditions including joint pain. It is rich in many vitamins and minerals that are beneficial to your health. According to Natural Joint Care, aloe vera can be given to people suffering from joint pain as it helps to ease the pain. The anti-inflammatory properties of this plant not only reduce inflammation but also repair damaged tissue and speeds up the growth of new and healthy cells.
Another remedy to get relief from joint pain is to drink a glass of potato flavored water on an empty stomach every morning. To make the drink, immerse a few slices of unpeeled potato in a glass of water overnight. This drink has the ability to ease the pain and reduce inflammation.
Mustard oil and camphor
A mixture of mustard oil and camphor is effective in improving your blood circulation as well as in reducing the inflammation and stiffness of the joints. Heat a cup of mustard oil with some camphor until the camphor dissolves. Let the oil reach lukewarm temperature and then apply it to the affected area.
Celery seeds have been used for many years for the treatment of arthritis and joint pain. It is rich in substances that have anti-inflammatory and pain killing properties. 3nB, the active component of celery which gives it the characteristic odor has been found to have analgesic properties and has been used for relieving pain in people suffering from arthritis. An extract of celery seed is helpful for those suffering from gout because 3nB helps in lowering the production of the uric acid that is responsible for causing gout.
Oregano oil, obtained from the leaves and flowers of the oregano plant contains powerful active substances that can provide relief from joint pain. The oil penetrates deep into the skin and soothes the affected areas. It increases the flexibility of your muscles and joints and also helps in reducing inflammation. Oregano is also effective as a strong pain killer.
Your body has to suffer tremendous amount of strain and stress, which makes certain parts of the body such as joints and bones vulnerable to wear and tear. Whatever may be the cause of your joint pain, a good understanding of the different ways to treat it can help prevent worsening of the condition. Nature provides us with a plethora of ingredients that are easily available, inexpensive and free from side effects. Taking advantage of these natural remedies can help in providing relief and treating the condition.