What Causes Arthritis (Osteoarthritis)?
Arthritis does not have a single cause but has many contributing factors. Mechanical over-use, excess body weight, past injuries and systemic inflammation are all major contributing factors to osteoarthritic changes and joint degradation.
Symptoms of Arthritis
People suffering from osteoarthritis typically have limited range of motion, stiffness and pain of the affected joints. The limited range of motion, pain and stiffness are typically worse in the morning and improve after moving the joint for a few minutes. Arthritic joints often show signs of mechanical degradation, including audible “cracking”, “popping” or “grinding” sounds. Arthritic joints may also show signs of swelling as the condition progresses. The hip, knee, low back, neck, shoulder, feet and hands are all commonly affected joints.
Natural Treatments for Arthritis
Naturopathic medicine offers effective treatments for osteoarthritis. Typically a patient undergoing a combination approach with two or three natural supportive treatments has a significant improvement in the pain, stiffness and disability associated with their osteoarthritis.
- Diet & Lifestyle: Keeping a healthy weight through diet modification and low-impact exercise is an important factor in reducing the progression, easing pain and promoting recovery in osteoarthritis.
- Prolozone Therapy: Prolozone is a treatment which utilizes an injection of ozone gas into an affected joint. This treatment turns down the inflammation associated with osteoarthritis by oxygenating the joint tissue and increasing its oxygen utilization. Prolozone injections are a very effective treatment for osteoarthritis in a majority of cases.
- Platelet-rich Plasma: Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is a natural treatment which uses a person’s own blood to treat their arthritis. PRP is a safe treatment which can significantly improve the stiffness, pain and mobility that people with osteoarthritis experience.
- Acupuncture: Acupuncture is an overall excellent treatment for pain. Acupuncture helps to reduce inflammation, swelling and pain associated with osteoarthritis. Acupuncture also promotes healing of affected joints.
- Food Sensitivities: Immune reactions to specific foods can also negatively impact arthritic joints. Eliminating offending foods can help to significantly reduce the pain and stiffness of an osteoarthritic joint.
- Dietary & Herbal Supplements: Although there are several dietary supplements and herbal medicines which are helpful in treating osteoarthritis and associated pain, it is best to consult a naturopathic doctor to have an individualized plan for you and to avoid any possible interactions or contraindications.
Natural Arthritis Treatments in Halifax
If you are interested in receiving natural arthritis treatments and are located in the Halifax area, please contact MacLeod Naturopathic to book an initial naturopathic visit to discuss your options.