What is Arthritis?
Basically, Arthritis is referred to a joint inflammation. It is liable to affect the joints, bones, the tissues surrounding joints and other connective tissues. There are many forms of arthritis, over one hundred. Rheumatoid arthritis (chronic system inflammatory disorder), Psoriatic arthritis, Osteoarthritis, Septic arthritis, Reactive arthritis (auto immune diseases), Ankylosing spondylitis, Systemic lupus erythematosis, and Fibromyalgia are some of the forms of arthritis. Most of the arthritis patients suffer from osteoarthritis. It is also known as degenerative joint disease. Neck osteoarthritis generally affects men and women over forty years of age. It progressively worsens with the passage of time.
Different types of arthritis create different symptoms, features, complications, and treatments. What they have in common is the tendency to affect the joints, cartilage, ligaments, muscles, tendons, and other internal body areas. Early and accurate detection and treatment can prevent irreversible damages and disabilities caused by arthritis. The treatment may involve surgeries, conventional medications or natural home remedies.
Causes of Arthritis
As already discussed, different forms of arthritis are triggered by different reasons. Osteoarthritis can affect any joint, even the spine. It may be caused due to work activities, accidents, sports injury, poor posture, obesity (puts more burden on the joints), the aging of the spinal structures and hereditary factors. Most often, it affects the joints in the hands, knees, spine, and hips. Gout and pseudogout are the result of metabolic abnormalities. At times, certain environmental factors, hormonal factors, infections or some unclear reasons, as in the case of rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus may also cause arthritis.
Symptoms of Arthritis
Osteoarthritis is generally characterized by the breakdown of the joint’s cartilage. This breakdown of cartilage causes the bones to rub against each other and the result is pain, stiffness, and loss of movement in the joint. Neck osteoarthritis tends to compress one or more nerve roots of the cervical spine region. This compression of nerves not only causes pain in the neck but it can also radiate to arms by causing numbness, pain, weakness, and tingling in the arms. Spine arthritis is characterized by stiffness and loss of flexibility in the spine, not to mention the pain.
Many forms of arthritis can cause symptoms affecting various organs of the body that do not directly involve the joints. Some such symptoms are weight loss, gland swelling (lymph node), fever, fatigue, feeling unwell, and even symptoms from abnormalities of organs such as the lungs, heart, or kidneys. Rheumatoid arthritis is generally associated with stiffness, fatigue, low fever, weak digestion, loss of energy, constipation, lack of appetite, and muscle and joint aches. It tends to become worse in the morning.
Natural Home Remedies for Arthritis
Steam baths, body massage and sea bathing are some of the regular home remedies. Other natural home remedies for arthritis are:
• Take one teaspoon of black sesame seeds and soak them in a one fourth cup of water. Kept overnight and take it in the morning. These soaked seeds as well as the water (in which they are soaked) both are beneficial in reducing frequent joint pains.
• Cut a medium-sized unpeeled potato into thin slices. Place these slices overnight in a large glass of cold water. Drink this water first think in the morning on an empty stomach. This therapy is one of the oldest yet effective natural home remedies for arthritis, especially rheumatoid arthritis.
• A gentle massage with olive oil (warm) helps cure arthritic pains. Hot vinegar can also be used.
• Regularly taking one cup of hot water with two teaspoons of honey and one small teaspoon of cinnamon powder two times a day can show encouraging results within a month.
• Take one teaspoon of sandalwood powder and add water just enough to make a paste and apply on the affected area.
• Dandelion leaf and dandelion root improve the functioning of kidney and liver respectively, thereby curing arthritic symptoms occurring due to the abnormal functioning of kidney and liver.
• Boswellia herb is beneficial in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.
• Mix 2-3 pieces of camphor in warm coconut oil or mustard oil. Massage the stiff and aching joints with this mixture to increase blood supply and reduce inflammation and stiffness.
• Taking green gram soup two times on a daily basis is yet another effective home remedy for arthritic pains. To prepare this soup, mix one tablespoon of green gram in a cup of water and add two crushed garlic cloves in it.
• The magnesium present in Epsom Salt soothes and relaxes stiff joints and muscles. Add three cups of Epsom Salt in hot bath water and soak in it.
• Drink water kept overnight in a copper glass. Copper is known for its healing properties in terms of the muscular system.
• Drinking 3-4 cups of alfafa tea daily for at least two weeks is a tried and tested cure for arthritis. Prepare alfafa tea by mixing one teaspoon of alfalfa seeds in one cup of water.
• Lavender, chamomile, rosemary oil and other such essential oils are some of the effective home remedies for inflammations caused by arthritis.
• Every morning, take lime juice diluted in water. The citric acid present in lime is a solvent of uric acid which is the primary cause of some types of arthritis.
• Drinking a small glass of cranberry juice every morning speeds up the curing process. The results will begin to show within 2-3 months.
• Due to its therapeutic properties, ginger is one of the most popular natural home remedies for arthritic pains, stiffness and inflammations. It can be taken orally or applied directly on the affected area.
• Take the juice of an orange, add one tablespoon of cod liver oil and whip. Drink this before sleeping.
• Guggulu, though less known, is an effective cure for arthritis. It is obtained from the plant of Balsamo-dendron mukul. After meals, eat half a teaspoon of guggulu with warm water, twice a day.
• Extract the juice of any green leafy vegetable and add carrot, celery and red beet juices in equal proportions. Drink the resultant magical potion.
• Take burdock and yucca to heal swellings and inflammations.
• Take fresh bathua leaves (pigweed) and extract their juice. Take two teaspoons of this juice on an empty stomach for about 2-3 months. Regular intake of this juice helps in the treatment of arthritis.
Diet for Arthritis
Carrot juice, cucumber juice, coconut water, vegetable soups, cooked vegetables constitute a healthy diet conducive in the treatment of arthritis. Taking a few walnuts or a fresh coconut on an empty stomach can help cure the disease. Cherries, avocados, brewer’s yeast, bananas, green leafy vegetables, pecans, and wheat germ supply essential nutrients to the body. A cup of fresh pineapple juice is beneficial in reducing swellings and inflammations in osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Vitamins C, vitamin E, vitamin B6, calcium, zinc, magnesium, niacin and other vitamins and minerals present in these items have therapeutic properties that help in the treatment and prevention of arthritis. For example, vitamin E protects and improves joint mobility.
Omege-3 fatty acids in fish oil have been proved effective in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. Last but definitely not the least, the anti-inflammatory properties of garlic have no match. It should be positively included in the diet to cure arthritis-related inflammations. It can be taken raw or cooked. Many people are known to have developed a taste for garlic cloves fried in ghee.