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 Many people struggle against the old enemy that accompanies aging...arthritis.  Pain, stiffness & swelling in the joints may not seem serious, but when you've started to experience it on a regular basis, it becomes clear why we should do all we can to treat this problem to regain mobility & lack of pain.

If you've never experienced arthritis, but suspect that you may be developing it, you should keep an eye on it.  If you have pain or swelling in your joints for two or more weeks, head to a doctor for a diagnosis. Arthritis is defines as a “painful inflammation and swelling of the joints”.  Because your pain could also be due to an injury of a joint, it's important to have it diagnosed properly & seek the best treatment.  If it is due to injury, treatment may include surgery, while treatment for arthritis will most likely be less invasive.  There are several things that the doctors might recommend:

Medications.  There are a variety of medications & creams that your doctor might recommend to combat arthritis.  Some of these options might be over-the-counter, while others might be prescription.  Some people just try different over-the-counter remedies, but you'll have the advantage of knowing which ones are a waste of money if you speak with your doctor.

Heat & Cold.  Speaking with your doctor can also help you to narrow down the correct times & methods to apply heat & cold packs to arthritic joints for the best relief.

Exercise.  It may seem counter-intuitive to exercise the joints that are causing you such pain, but it does help.  The key is to know the correct exercises that will help instead of causing further harm to your joints.  Look into exercises that are approved by a physical therapist to find some relief in this manner.

Diet & Supplements.  Because this is a problem in your body caused by inflammation, find a diet that wars against inflammation in the joints.  Make sure it's high in fruits & vegetables, and low in trans-fats, & you should be on the right track!  Also consider looking into supplements that can help fight inflammation.  Turmeric is one such spice to consider using if you are not allergic.

Surgery.  If your arthritis is bad enough, your doctor may advise surgery to take care of the problem.  This can be a huge relief for those whose arthritis is advanced enough, but if you feel that you could benefit from some of the other areas listed, discuss those options first until you are convinced that this course may be necessary. 

Arthritis may be a common accompaniment to aging, but it doesn't need to be debilitating for everyone, nor a source of constant pain.  Make it your goal to do all that you can to lessen the pain instead of just living with it.  Your body & your mind will thank you!


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