What are my rheumatoid arthritis treatment options?
Being troubled by a medical condition is sometimes only half the problem. The other half is finding out that your disease’s origins or cures are currently unknown to specialists. For example, it’s hard to know what is considered to be an effective rheumatoid arthritis treatment, because it’s just as hard to determine what causes it in the first place. However, maintaining an optimistic attitude is definitely an important part of the treatment for rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatments
Due to the subtle nature of this disease, most rheumatoid arthritis treatments available nowadays focus on healing the obvious symptoms, such as swelling, pain, joint stiffness, and fatigue. If you suffer from RA you know exactly how hard it is to deal with a disease that causes both stiffness and fatigue. Although physical therapy is part of the RA treatment – it improves joint mobility and reduces pain- specialists warn that too much physical therapy can actually be harmful, speeding up the progression of the condition.
Conventional Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment Options
Various drugs and medications represent efficient rheumatoid arthritis treatment options as well.
Disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (or DMARDs) can be prescribed to slow or even prevent joint damage. These drugs are administered orally or by injection and interfere directly in the behavior of the affected immune system. Although DMARDs have proven to be successful in most treatment cases, doctors warn women that some of these medications may cause birth defects.
Along with DMARDs, physicians also recommend non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for swelling, rheumatoid pain and stiffness. You can find these drugs in traditional capsule form, like ibuprofen or naproxen. As NSAIDs intake presents various side effects that could trouble those who also suffer from asthma, gastric problems, such as a peptic ulcer, it is very important that you follow strictly your doctor’s directions regarding your recommended daily NSAIDs dosage.
Not in all cases do NSAIDs provide the patients with the much-needed relief. When this happens, corticosteroids can be taken as tablets or as injections directly into the affected areas. Although many people are reluctant to receive any form of steroid treatment, you need to know that a simple corticosteroids injection provides immediate results. The pain disappears and another shot isn’t required for a period varying from a few weeks up to several months.
Yet when it comes to medication for rheumatoid arthritis treatments, biologic response modifiers (BRMs) or simply biologics are the latest type of therapy. They are used when other treatments fail to deliver adequate results, so when they are used, they can assist in obtaining significant improvements in both simple and severe RA cases. Their suppressive behavior regulates cell functions in the immune system. Although very efficient against rheumatoid arthritis, biologics are usually prescribed with additional medication meant to lower their side effects.
Natural Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment Options
Rheumatoid Arthritis Diet
A healthy diet is also an effective part of the treatment for rheumatoid arthritis. Very often people diagnosed with RA experience an unexplained loss of appetite. Fortunately, with the support of a nutritionist you can regain your desire for food and with it, the much-needed nutrients and calories your body requires to overcome the symptoms of RA. Cut down the saturated fats and salts, consume lots of omega-3 fatty acids (found mostly in fish oil, walnuts, and soybeans), cut down meat and animal foods as much as possible. If you happen to be a vegetarian, you’ll find that it’s not so hard to maintain an efficient RA diet.
In addition, doctors recommend people who smoke to quit as soon as possible, as part of the rheumatoid arthritis treatment. If you feel that it’s unfair how every health condition implies giving up smoking, do not despair. People whose vice of choice happens to be alcohol have something to work on to: due to the systemic behavior or rheumatoid arthritis, doctors recommend reducing alcohol consumption to a minimum.
Surgical Treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis
Ultimately, when rheumatoid arthritis sufferers feel overwhelmed by the pain of this condition, specialists recommend surgery as an option. Arthroscopy or arthroplasty can be performed to remove and replace affected joints, especially for the hips and knees.
In conclusion, although not much is known for the moment about the origins or causes of rheumatoid arthritis, specialists work around the clock to make sure that efficient and, at the same time, affordable rheumatoid arthritis treatments are being made available to everyone who needs them. You no longer need to worry or feel helpless regarding your condition. With the help of physical therapy, diet and medication you can kiss those dull days goodbye and live a decent, active and pain-free life!
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