A couple of posts back we went over causes of joint pain and talked about natural ways to correct it. If you missed that article, you’ll find it by clicking here.
Today let’s go over the most effective natural supplements to address the inflammatory damage already done and to speed the process of healing. We’ll also talk about specific treatments that can help.
Supplements for Joint Pain
The Hyperhealth Pro Natural Medicine Database lists 64 separate natural remedies to address joint pain. We don’t have the space to address all of these here. Instead, here are the ones I’ve found most effective in my practice:
- Capsaicin – this pepper extract is used topically on the affected area. It provides fairly quick relief for many people. It’s available in cream, liquid, spray and patch forms.
- S-Adenosylmethionine – also known as SAMe, it can help alleviate joint pain and also reverse damage already done
- Glucosamine & Condroitin Sulfate – these can be used together or separately. They act to inhibit the enzyme that breaks down cartilage and also help rebuild damaged tissue.
- Hyaluronic Acid – increases synovial fluid in joints, thus increasing the natural cushioning effect needed for comfortable movement.
- Natural Enzymes – enzymes are natural anti-inflammatories. The best are bromelain, chymotrypsin, papain and trypsin. It is most effective to use these together.
- Curcumin – extracted from the curry spice, turmeric, curcumin inhibits Interleukin 1, an inflammatory substance found in joint pain.
- Ginger – not only a yummy spice, but also a potent pain reliever and anti-inflammatory.
Of course this list isn’t exhaustive. Each person responds in their own unique way. I mostly recommend these types of approaches as ways to deal with acute joint pain while we’re pulling the plug on those underlying factors we talked about in the previous post, Natural Arthritis Pain Relief.
Other Effective Joint Pain Treatments
To relieve symptoms while you’re working on correcting the underlying issues, the following treatments are also useful:
- Acupuncture – a German study published in 2006 demonstrated statistically significant and clinically relevant improvements in all participants receiving acupuncture both after treatment and at 6 months. These improvements occurred in all major outcome measures.
- Chiropractic – when done correctly, chiropractic adjustments can restore healthy movement in stiff joints. Once able to move more freely, inflammation decreases and pain subsides.
- Microcurrent Positional Tuina – this is a modified acupressure technique that uses Oriental massage combined with microcurrent stimulation. It effectively releases tense muscles and connective tissue around inflamed joints to restore natural healthy movement.
Because we are all different, each person will respond to supplements and treatments differently. I always recommend you consult with an expert in complementary and alternative medicine when considering your options. You’re likely to save many months of trial and error by doing so.
But if you do decide to explore these options on your own, I recommend taking it a step at a time. By changing only one variable at a time you’ll know clearly if it’s helping you or not. If you change too many things at once, it’s much harder to sort out what’s working.
Linde, K., et al. Acupuncture for osteoarthritic pain: an observational study in routine care. Rheumatology (Oxford). 45(2):222-227, 2006.