Attention Arthritis Sufferers
There is one type of arthritis that so far has absolutely no cure. Rheumatoid arthritis is one of the most debilitating conditions to have, and for the most part the goal in treating this condition will be the reduction of joint damage as well as pain management. The long term goal will be to improve the person's physical abilities with the hope of improving their quality of life.
What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?
- This disease is chronic in nature and therefore a long term treatment plan will need to be formulated by a specialist in rheumatoid arthritis. The first line of treatment will be to get the pain of the disease under control. This is usually done with drugs that are a short term solution for pain management. In addition to drug therapy, doctors will also recommend a change in diet as well as physio therapy. It's also important that the family understands the emotional support the person will need, in order to help the treatment to be successful.
Strategy for Arthritic Pain
- The main strategy will be to reduce the patient’s pain, as well as their discomfort level, and most importantly preventing deformities from starting. Focusing on medication and reducing joint stress will help to some degree, as will physical therapy and occupational therapy. As a last resort surgery may be considered. Today, many doctors are also looking at alternative treatments to help lessen pain, and in some cases helping to restore natural function to the joint areas.
- The goal of physio therapy will be to assess the amount of damage that has occurred and devise a treatment plan that will help to get the person mobile again. It will look to improve the range of motion in the different joint areas, as well as helping to build up the surrounding muscle tissue. They will look at treatments that will help to stop the progression of the disease, and this is a good time to discuss alternative natural therapies for the condition with your therapist.
- They will look at using treatments of hot and cold therapies that will help to stop enzymes that destroy cartilage. They will also look at electro stimulation to try and relieve the pain naturally, and may compliment that with the use of analgesic creams. They will also use hydrotherapy in order to help strengthen the muscles as well as stopping muscle spasms.
Immune system Boosting helps
- Your doctor will look at medications that will boost the immune system, while using other medications to reduce the inflammation. In severe cases your doctor will also discuss with you the use of corticosteroids as a temporary therapy when NSAIDs do not perform well. For the most part these drugs cannot be used long term due, to the adverse effects they can have on the body. These drugs are effective, but unfortunately are also very dangerous to use over the long term. Treatments that will help to boost the immune system as well, as natural treatments to help restore the joint areas, may prove to be an effective adjunct to some of the mainstream treatments.
In some cases surgical intervention may be considered by your doctors. This of course carries risks with it but can also have benefits, and both must be weighed carefully before proceeding. There is no one easy treatment for this disease, and many different approaches will be considered by both you and your doctor, in order to come up with the most effective treatment plan. Over time the patient will find a treatment plan that will work to some extent so that they can live a fairly normal life.