Common Types of Arthritis and Treatment Options

Treatment Options for arthritis

Common Types of Arthritis and Treatment Options

Do you or someone you know suffer from arthritis? It is a common disease, you likely do. What type? Only a doctor can tell, but there are over 100 different types of arthritis. Despite this large number, they typically fall into two categories.

1 – Osteoarthritis

This disease is most commonly found in men and women over the age of 65. It is also known as degenerative arthritis. This name comes from the progression of the disease. It beings with cartilage breakdown. The cartilage covering the bones degenerates and wears away. Essentially, sufferers have exposed bones. These bones then rub against each other, causing severe pain and discomfort. Many also experience difficultly moving.

The most noticeable symptom of osteoarthritis is joint pain. Stiffness is common the morning and after movement. All joints can be impacted by osteoarthritis, but the most common are the hips, feet, back, knees, and fingers. Those with arthritis problems in the hands and feet may find it difficult to walk without a limp and grasp otherwise easy objects.

As with most types of arthritis, there is not just one cause for osteoarthritis. There are many contributing factors. These include body weight, previous injuries, and genes. Although osteoarthritis typically affects the elderly, athletes who repeatedly use the same joints and suffer injury are at an increased risk. As for body weight, the joints and muscle surrounding them carry most of the body’s weight; more weight applies more pressure. Although rare, there are defects that can lead to osteoarthritis. These include a lack of protein that makes up cartilage and the poor fitting of bones and joints.

2 – Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis affects over one million people in the United States. It does not discriminate, as individuals of all ages are susceptible to the disease. In fact, there are three types of rheumatoid arthritis for juveniles alone. The cause? The immune system is supposed to protect our body, but in some cases it does the exact opposite. With rheumatoid arthritis, it attacks the joint lining membrane.

The most noticeable symptom of rheumatoid arthritis is pain. If untreated, other complications can arise. The most common is disability. To prevent this from happening, all patients are urged to exercise their joints and muscles, even though it may be painful at first. Another common symptom of rheumatoid arthritis is inflammation. The swelling can be mild to severe. In most instances, this is what separates rheumatoid arthritis from other forms. Swelling and inflammation is likely, but it is much more prominent and debilitating.

Luckily, rheumatoid arthritis suffers rarely experience constant pain. The disease flares up from time to time. These flare ups are trigged by joint overuse and certain foods. As for the cause, it is currently unknown. There are however many theories. One being genes.

3 – Fibromyalgia

Although not always classified as a form of arthritis, fibromyalgia is an arthritis related condition. This disease affects over three million people in the United States. That number is actually higher, but some patients are misdiagnosed.

The most noticeable symptom of fibromyalgia is muscle pain. There are also tender spots in the muscle and body that are more susceptible to pain and pressure. Additional symptoms include headaches, bladder problems, difficulty thinking, fatigue, and sleep difficulty.

While researchers have yet to determine a connection, a good percentage of those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis later develop fibromyalgia. It wasn’t bad enough that your joints hurt, but now the muscles in your body too? Additional causes may be related to prior injuries. Some studies have shown that those with previous injuries are more likely to develop the disease. Many experts believe the change in muscles, due to injury, can later lead to chronic pain and fibromyalgia.

Now that you are familiar with some of the most common types of arthritis, what comes next? If you or someone who you know suffers from arthritis, medical care is important. A proper diagnosis is important to developing the best treatment option. Low impact exercise can loosen the joints and strengthen the surrounding muscles. This not only eliminates joint stiffness, but it can later prevent disability and deformities.

Finally, some pain can be treated, but it will reoccur. Those suffering from arthritis need to learn how to manage their pain. This involves not focusing too much on it, eliminating stress, asking for help, getting a good night sleep, and learning how to calmly relax.

Cayenne Pepper and Arthritis Relief

cayenne pepper arthritis cure

cayenne pepper arthritis cure

Most arthritis sufferers turn to their medicine cabinet to seek relief. A medical professional typically offers this suggestion. If you suffer from arthritis, your physician does have your best interest at heart. They truly believe over-the-counter or prescribed pain medication is best for you. It may be, but many natural remedies relieve pain too. One of them is cayenne pepper, also know simply as red chili pepper.

As great as it is to know that some individuals are able to seek arthritis pain relief from red chili peppers, you likely have many questions. What type of red pepper? What format should I opt for? How much should I consume? Do I eat it or apply it to the skin and how often? If you have these questions, please continue reading on for answers.

Cayenne pepper is available in many different formats, including capsules, oil, creams, and pepper. Where you purchase yours will depend on the remedy selected. For example, if you wish to try a topical cream, head to the drug store. If you wish to increase your cayenne pepper intake naturally, head to your local supermarket or organic food store.

Cayenne Pepper Remedy #1

Mix a small amount of red pepper with a small amount of castor oil. Use a paper towel or cloth to soak in the mixture. Apply the damp paper towel or cloth to the painful area. Some recommend applying and leaving on overnight. Castor oil has many health benefits, although it is not right for everyone. Try this home remedy for a couple of hours during the day first. If you notice a decrease in pain with no reactions, aim for overnight relief.

Cayenne Pepper Remedy #2

Purchase the cayenne pepper spice. This is the dry mixture. Add to your food. If you have digestive problems, you may notice a few complications at first. For many, their body needs to adjust to the pepper, as it can be difficult to digest. Start slow, like with 1/8 tablespoon. Overtime, work your way to two teaspoons a day. You can scatter this dosage out over different meals. Red pepper can be added to most foods.

Cayenne Pepper Remedy #3

Purchase hot sauce that is made from cayenne pepper. The hot sauce label should state the main ingredient is “aged cayennes.” Apply to the painful areas of your body at least two times a day. Many report this home remedy does work, but there is the possibility of stained clothes.

Cayenne Pepper Remedy #4

Purchase an over-the-counter topical cream with capsaicin as the main ingredient. This is an alternative to using the above mentioned hot sauce. Many creams use capsaicin, which is derived from cayenne pepper. If on a budget, try the above mentioned hot sauce remedy first. If it does not work, try this alternative.

As with any natural and home remedy, it is important to consider the risk and speak with a trusted medical professional. The active ingredient in cayenne pepper is capsaicin. It can interact with a number of drugs, including acid reducers, aspirin, blood thinners, and ACE inhibitors. If taking these medications, hold off. First, speak to your primary care physician or a pharmacist. He or she can inform you of the dangers or the risks of mixing with your current medications.

With all natural and home remedies, it is important to remember variance. Our bodies process food differently. Cayenne pepper may provide relief from some, but not others. It is best to experiment to find the best pepper remedy and dosage.

Speaking of relief, what will happen if this remedy works? You will notice a decrease in pain. The longer you take these home remedies, the less pain you will experience. As previously stated, the active ingredient in cayenne pepper is capsaicin. It is found in many medications and has aspirin like qualities. The pepper improves blood flow and circulation and releases natural endorphins, which help combat pain and discomfort.

Arthritis Relief: How to Choose a Supplement

Supplements for Arthritis

Supplements for Arthritis

If you suffer from arthritis, you may look high and low for relief. Luckily, you don’t have to look very far. Did you know that certain herbal, dietary, and natural supplements can aid with arthritis pain and discomfort? Some not only reduce pain and discomfort, but swelling too. If this is new to you, you may want to run out and purchase a bottle of supplements, but wait! If this is your first time buying these supplements, you must first know some important things.

Not all supplements aid in arthritis relief. There are wide ranges of dietary, herbal, and natural supplements available for sale, both locally and online. Do the research first to determine what supplements may reduce your joint pain and swelling. For example, Avocado Soybean Unsaponifiables (ASU) is believed to slow down the making of inflammation causing chemicals. Devil’s Claw can reduce inflammation and pain in arthritis patients. These are just a sample of the supplements that can help. Before heading to the health store, know what to buy.

Valid claims. When researching supplements or when browsing at the store, read all packages. Most will outright state what the product can do. For example, capsules of Devil’s Claw may state they assist with the reduction of arthritis pain and swelling. The keywords are reduce and assist. Arthritis has no cure. You can manage and temporarily treat the joint pain, stiffness, and swelling, but you cannot cure it. Avoid any supplement or product that claims it will cure your arthritis. This is an outright lie and usually a waste of money.

Price. Herbal, natural, and dietary supplements are not like over-the-counter pain relievers. They rarely provide you with immediate relief. Instead, they should be taken overtime. Most reduce the likelihood of pain and inflammation, especially with regular and continued use. Unfortunately, this means you may buy many supplements. To prevent the costs from becoming too high, price compare. Find a quality, yet cheap brand. Buy your supplements on sale, buy in bulk, use coupons, or shop at a store with good prices. Always compare price with quantity. A larger package of supplement capsules will cost more money, but it is usually a better value for that money.

Doctor’s recommendations. Most arthritis patients fear discussing supplements with their physician. Most believe they will only hear discouragement. Not all physicians believe in or recommend the use of supplements, but don’t be afraid to discuss this with your doctor. Many now embrace supplements, when used with prescribed or recommended medicine. So, tell your doctor you want to try ASU to reduce your joint swelling, but that you will continue to take your over-the-counter pain relievers for pain, as directed.

Drug interactions. Why is it important to speak with your physician about supplements? Some can interact with common medications. For example, the above mentioned Devil’s Claw can counteract with diabetes medication, acid reducers, and blood thinners. Ask your doctor if the supplement you intend to take is risky with your current medications.

Side effects. Most supplements come directly from nature, but not all things in nature are safe for all. Some supplements can have side effects. For example, Gingko can reduce disease flare-ups for some. However, it does have many side effects. These include headaches, upset stomachs, and dizziness. Examine the side effects for your preferred supplement and compare. Are they manageable?

In short, many natural supplements can provide you with arthritis relief. But, don’t run out and buy the first supplement you see at the health store. Opt for a supplement that will not interact with your current medications, one that is affordable, one that has little to no side effects, and one that will treat your troubling arthritis symptoms.

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Arthritis Patients: Do You Need Surgery?

Do you need surgery

Do you need surgery

If you have recently been diagnosed with arthritis or if you suspect you have it, thoughts of surgery may automatically pop into your head.  Yes, some patients must undergo surgery, but it is actually very rare.  Despite the common belief, it is possible to treat and manage the symptoms of arthritis, such as joint paint, swelling, and difficulty moving, without surgery.

When is surgery considered an option?

Unbearable Pain.  When the pain is so severe that over-the-counter pain relievers and prescription pain relievers do not work, surgery may be the last resort.  Overtime, our bodies get use to the pain relievers we ingest.  Overtime the Tylenol that once provided with you with relief, may no longer do so.  If and when that point arrives, speak to your doctor about prescribed medications.  He or she will likely want to try those first before opting for surgery.

Joint damage.  The elderly and those who let their arthritis go untreated are susceptible to joint damage. This includes deformities.  For example, a patient with severe rheumatoid arthritis may have bent out of shape fingers.  This not only looks different, but it is excruciating in terms of pain.  Surgery can be used to correct these deformities and other severe joint damage.

What type of procedures may be performed?

Arthroscopy.  This is a minimally invasive surgery and a great alternative to open surgery.  A small incision is made in the skin.  Then, a thin viewing instrument, known as an arthroscope is inserted.  It’s destination?  The painful joint.  Many surgeons use this procedure to diagnose a problem and decide on a course of treatment.  It can also be used to perform small surgeries.  It has many benefits, including less pain, lower costs, and less hospitalization.  So, if you need surgery, offer an arthroscopy as a suggestion.

Arthrodesis.  This surgery is very rare, as there is a high risk of complications.  And, it results in a permanent disability.  So, why is it even offered?  It is the only hope of pain relief for some individuals.  These individuals have a diseased joint that cannot be fixed any other way.  Pain and swelling are common and unmanageable.  Arthrodesis involves fusing two bones into a joint.  This prevents joint movement.  For many, this is a last and only resort.

Joint replacement.  Joint replacement surgeries are common with the shoulders, knees, and hips.  With joint replacement surgeries, the ends of nearby bones are replaced.  This results in new joint surfaces.  It will take time and physical therapy, but most patients experience a reduction and pain and an increase in mobility.  For the fingers and toes, joint replacement is less common.  Typically, surgeons opt for the fusion of smaller joints, as opposed to total replacement.

What are the alternatives to arthritis related surgery?

It depends.  For starters, how severe is your arthritis?  When were you diagnosed?  The earlier osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are diagnosed, the easier it is to treat without surgery.  Exercise is vital.  Yes, it is difficult to move your joints, so exercise may seem like it is out of the question, but it is not.  Start with low impact exercises or opt for water exercises or physical therapy.  The more a joint is moved, the less stiffness you experience.  This can later reduce the chance of deformities.

As for the pain, remember that surgery is only used as a last resort.  First, try over-the-counter pain pills and cream or ask for stronger prescription medications.  Heat also helps many.  Soak in a warm bath daily or use a heating pad.  Although there is little scientific proof to back these claims, many arthritis patients report long-term relief with continued use of natural remedies and supplements, including cayenne pepper, pineapples, ASU, and ginger.

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Arthritis Pain Relief and Supplements: What You Need to Know

otc pain relief for arthritis

Arthritis Pain Relief

Do you suffer from arthritis or know someone who does?  For arthritis sufferers, pain becomes a fixture in their life.  Over-the-counter medications do provide relief, but it short lived.  As soon as the medication wears off, the pain returns.  There is hope though.  For many, that hope comes in the form of natural and dietary supplements.  Just a sample of the arthritis pain relief supplements that can provide relieve include devil’s claw, ginger, stinging nettle, flax, and ASU.

Arthritis Pain Relief With Herbal Remedies

You now know that some herbal and dietary supplements can provide arthritis relief.  Your first thought may be to run to the drug store.  Wait!  Before you make your purchase, there a number of things you should know about these supplements.

Some herbal, dietary, and natural supplements counteract with over-the-counter and prescribed medications.  For that reason, medical advice is strongly advised.  Talk to a medical professional.  This should be a primary care physician or at least a pharmacist.  The goal of supplements is to relieve arthritis pain and discomfort, not create other complications.  If you are worried about discouragement, don’t ask if a supplement will work.  Instead, ask if it is safe to take with your medications.

The Bad News, No Cure for Arthritis

Remember there is no cure.  You can treat arthritis, but it cannot be cured.  For that reason, stay away from any supplements with that claim arthritis claim.  You will waste your money.  These supplements can reduce the pain, inflammations, sleep difficulties, and decreased mobility associated with arthritis, but that is it.  Plenty of products outright state this; do not opt for one that that lies.

Do Not Stop Taking Prescribed Medications for Herbal Remedies

These herbal supplements are not worth putting your health at risk.  As previously stated, some supplements counteract with over-the-counter and prescribed medication.  If you are in severe pain, you may be willing to make the switch.  You may stop taking your diabetes medication to take devil’s claw, and so forth.  This is not recommended.  Never stop taking prescribed medication.  Once again, speak to a healthcare professional.  Many supplements provide relief and are safe to take.  Your doctor can advise you on which supplements are best.

A World of Information Online About Arthritic Pain Relief

A world of information is available online.  Almost fifty herbal, natural, and dietary supplements can aid in arthritis relief.  Some treat joint inflammation and swelling, while others treat sleep difficultly, decreased mobility, cartilage damage, and pain.  Which is right for you?  An online internet search will tell.  Read reviews to see what people have to say.  Look for both positive and negative reviews.  It is rare for a product to receive rave reviews, but be cautious of telltale signs, such as “scam,” “waste of money,” or “too many side effects.”  And by all means, don’t forget about Health & Wellness in One Place.

Arthritis Pain Relief Supplements Side Effects

Speaking of the side effects, know what they are.  Then, make an informed decision.  Arthritis sufferers should examine the risk to determine if they are worth it.  For example, cat’s claw is a supplement used to reduce inflammation.  Possible side effects include headaches, vomiting, and dizziness.  If your job requires you to be on your feet all day, the dizziness may be too much to handle.  Look for an arthritis-helping supplement that has little to no side effects.

You can and should find the best deals.  In terms of supplements, the best deal isn’t always the lowest price.  Aim for the best quality for the lowest price.  This is where the above mentioned research comes in handy.  Look for specific brand names with positive feedback.  When buying online, compare the size with price and include the cost of shipping.  Amazon is a good place to find bargains.

You must follow all directions.  Herbal supplements are typically safe to use, when taken as directed.  Different brands use similar extracts, but those amounts vary.  Consult with your primary care physician or the bottle to get an exact dosage.  Despite the common belief, more will do no good.  In fact, it may cause complications.

Finally, if you take herbal supplements on a daily basis, write down and tape to your refrigerator.  Also, inform those close to you.  In the event you need medical care and cannot speak for yourself, responding personnel must know all medications you are taking, including supplements.

Arthritis Pain Relief and Supplements

Favorite Arthritis Pain: Daily Tips to Gain Control

arthritic hands

Arthritis X-Rays

If you suffer from arthritis pain, you may not only experience joint pain and swelling, but difficulty functioning from day-to-day. Arthritis is not a walk in the park. Whether you are prone to spurts of pain or experience it all the time, going about a normal day may seem like an impossible task, but it doesn’t have to be. What can you do?

Arthritis Pain and What you Can do

Make it easy to get around your home. If you suffer from arthritis pain of the toes, feet, hips, or knees, it is difficult to move. Walking from one room in your home to the next, may trigger pain. Make it as easy as possible to move around. Is your home an obstacle course with furniture in the way? Enlist the help of a trusted friend, family member, or neighbor. Rearrange your furniture to create a straight path. The less turns and steps you have to make, the better.

Make sure all needed items are within easy reach. Regardless of what joints hurt, it can be difficult to reach for and grip. So, don’t. Do you find it too difficult to reach to the high shelf in your kitchen cupboard? If so, don’t use it. Place all foods and dishes on lower shelves or utilize your counter top. Do you find it too difficult to grasp dresser drawer handles? Instead, use your closet to hang clothes. With one simple tug, many fall right off the hanger. Learning to prevent and manage the arthritiic pain and discomfort associated with arthritis includes making your life at home easier.

Treating Arthritic Pain

Keep pain relievers handy. All arthritis patients suffer from pain. Depending on the type of arthritis, this pain may be constant or it may come and go. Either way, pain relievers are a lifesaver. They typically provide relief in as little as 15 minutes. Some over-the-counter arthritis creams provide pain relief as soon as contact is made with the skin. Since they do work, keep them on hand. Keep some pills and creams in your home, car, and purse. There are many ways to reduce the risk of arthritis pain, but there are no guarantees. Anything can trigger pain, so always be prepared.

Rely on walking aids. If you suffer from arthritis of the toes, feet, hips, or knees, walking can be difficult and painful. With each step you take, pressure is applied to your already painful joints. What can you do is lessen the pressure with walking aids. These may include knee braces, crutches, or canes. Remember, the less pressure you apply to your joints, the less pain you should feel.

Get Help When You Need it.

Ask for help. Arthritis patients experience times when they feel helpless. This is often when they cannot open a jar of spaghetti sauce, walk to the mailbox without experiencing pain, or lift a heavy box. It is very frustrating to be unable to handle daily tasks without pain. Yes, you are encouraged to try, but not it if will bring on pain. Although it can be hard, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Ask your neighbor to deliver your mail to your home and save a heavy box until a family member can help you.

Arthritis Pain and Emotions

Keep a journal. One of the many problems arthritis patients face is difficulty managing their pain. Talking about the difficulties you face can help. For most, the worst thing to do is to keep these emotions bottled up in side. Are you mad that you are suffering from arthritis, get that anger out of you. Deal with ease issues or complication as they arise, don’t keep things bottled up inside. When they do come out, it will be huge. It is best to talk to someone at home or join an arthritis support group. If you opt not to, keep a journal instead. Write down all feelings, including the good and the bad.

In short, there are many ways to treat and manage arthritis pain. Over-the-counter products are a lifesaver for many arthritis patients, but they are not you only option. The first step should be focusing on day-to-day tasks. When these seem easier and less painful, the rest will simply just fall into place.

Arthritis pain

Arthritis Pain: Can Supplements Help?

arthritis pain

Pain of Arthritis

Do you suffer from arthritis?  Are you tired of suffering?  Do you want it to end and now?  Immediate pain relief is possible with over-the-counter pain medications.  Unfortunately, the pain returns as soon as the medication wears off.  What can you do?  You can try herbal and dietary supplements.  Many have little to no risks.  In fact, most have additional health benefits.

So, what dietary supplements can help you treat, manage, or relieve the pain of arthritis?

Note: the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) did not approve most of these supplements.  We all know that this approval is important, but lack of approval does not mean a thing.  Perform a standard internet search with the supplements highlighted below and you will hear first-hand that they do work.

Arthritis Pain and Ginger

Ginger.  This supplement comes from the root of a ginger plant.  Depending on the form, it comes from either fresh or dried root.  What is ideal about this supplement is your options.  You can choose from capsules, powder, extract, and oils.  Up to two grams a day are recommended.  The extract can be added to tea for taste.

According the popular Arthritis Today magazine, ginger extract helps with inflammation.  It has the ability to slow down the chemicals that cause inflammation, including COX-2.  In addition to aiding in arthritis pain, this supplement is an ideal cure for motion sickness, as it not only subsides pain, but nausea and vomiting too.

Arthritis Pain and Avocado Soybean Unsaponifiables

Avocado Soybean Unsaponifiables, otherwise known as ASU.  Avocado Soybean Unsaponifiables (ASU) not only provides pain relief, but it lessens joint swelling and inflammation too.  Various studies, since 2002, have shown that ASU did stop inflammation.  Not only that, it slows the break down of cartilage and in some instances worked to repair prior damage.

Avocado Soybean Unsaponifiables is available in capsule format.  It can be found for sale at most health and nutrition stores.  Read all labels before taking, but most call for two capsules a day.

Arthritis Pain and Fish Oil

Fish Oil.  Fish oil has long been known for its health benefits.  Fish oil comes from cold-water fish.  The Arthritis Today magazine recommends up to two three-ounce servings of fish a week.  For those unable to stomach the taste and smell, capsules and tablets are available.  This supplement is affordable and available for sale at most retail locations, including department stores, nutrition stores, drug stores, and grocery stores.

As previously state, it has long been known that fish oil is a healthy supplement.  It helps to promote healthy blood circulation.  Due to its ability to protect against high blood pressure and heart disease, you cannot go wrong with this supplement.  The reduction of inflammation in your joints and decreased pain are only the beginning.

Arthritis Pain and Devil’s Claw

Devil’s claw.  Although the name sounds frightening, this supplement is an herbal remedy that was and is widely used in South Africa.  It is available in powder, liquid, and capsule formats.  According to the Arthritis Today magazine, the active ingredient in devil’s claw is Harpagoside.  Many claim it reduces both joint pain and inflammation.

Devil’s claw is shown to reduce the inflammation and relieve the pain associated with arthritis.  Unfortunately, there are known risks involved with this supplement.  Those who are pregnant, taking blood thinners, antacids, or diabetes medication should not take the devil’s claw supplement, regardless of the form.

Arthritis Pain and Ginkgo

Ginkgo, also known as ginkgo biloba.  Ginkgo has long been touted as a memory-enhancing supplement.  Although medical professionals have yet to agree on this benefit, there is more.  For many, it improves blood flow and circulation.  This improves the overall health and well being of the body.  Some studies have shown that it reduces disease flair ups, including arthritis.

Ginkgo is available for sale in most retail stores.  It is available in liquid, extract, or capsules format.  The Arthritis Today magazine recommends choosing supplements with 24% flavonol glycosides and up to 7% terpene lactones.

As you can see, many herbal and dietary supplements can reduce the pain associated with arthritis.  The good news?  These are just a sample of the supplements available for sale.  Before trying any supplement, including the ones highlighted above, research or speak to your primary care physician.  Some can counteract with common over-the-counter or prescribed medications.

Arthritis pain

Arthritis and Driving: Tips for Ease

pain of arthritis while driving

Pain of arthritis while driving

Those suffering from arthritis may find it difficult to walk to the car and back.  However, most do not let arthritis stop them from enjoying their life.  So, you may head out of the house and hop into your car.  This is great, what if you start experiencing pain?  How do you treat it on the road or prevent that pain from coming back the next time?

Arthritis and Driving First Tip

Keep arthritis pain relievers in the car.  In one of your car’s compartments, have a few pain relief supplies on hand.  This may include over-the-counter pain pills, a tube of arthritis cream, or on-the-go heat patches.  Whether you experience pain as soon as you get in your car, or later down the road, rely on these over-the-counter products to seek relief.  If you live in an area with cold winters, do not keep these items in your car, as they may freeze.  Instead, put them in your purse or fanny pack.

Arthritis and Driving Over the Counter

Speaking of over-the-counter products for arthritis pain relief, most retail stores sell on-the-go heating patches.  These patches stick to your body and warm with skin contact.  ThermaCare is a well-known brand.  They are ideal when you can’t use an electric or microwaveable heating pad.  If in pain before you leave the house, but must still leave, like for a holiday party or a doctor’s appointment, apply an on-the-go heated patch.  Relief will last for up to 12 hours.  Since they stick directly to the skin, no adjustments should be needed.

Arthritis and Driving Second Tip

Buy a remote car starter.  If you live in the northern United States, it is important to warm your car first.  Unfortunately, this may mean an extra trip back and forth.  It doesn’t have to.  Instead, purchase a remote car starter.  This device allows you to start and warm your car from inside your home.  They also make it easier to unlock car doors.  Instead of fumbling with the keys, push the button and your car doors unlock!  When buying a remote car starter, look for stores that offer free or discounted installation.

Arthritis and Driving Third Tip

Buy no slip steering wheel covers.  Those who suffer from arthritis of the fingers, dread driving.  In fact, some may fear the danger they put themselves and others in.  If you find it difficult to grip your car’s steering wheel, make a new purchase.  That purchase should be an easy grip and non slip-able steeling wheel cover.  Ask a store employee, family member, or friend to install the cover for you.

Arthritis and Driving Fourth Tip

Keep a jar opener in the car.  If you have arthritis of the hands, you likely already utilize rubber jar openers at home.  They make griping, twisting, and turning easier.  Keep one in your car.  Use it to unscrew your car’s gas cap.  You can also find arthritis gas cap wrenches available for sale.  They slip over your gas cap, have an extended and easy grip handle.  These are nice, but they can be hard to find.  For the same price, you could easily buy 20 rubber jar openers, which accomplish the same goal.

Arthritis ad Driving Fifth Tip

Keep your car well gassed.  As previously stated, there are tools available to make opening and losing the gas cap easier.  Even with these tools, it can still be difficult and painful.  To prevent the onset of pain, always have a full tank of gas in your car.  You won’t be forced to put gas in when you are already in pain or more susceptible to it.  If you have a full-service gas station in your area, use it.

As you can see, there are many steps that you can take to ease travel and car use.  Just because you suffer from arthritis and are prone to pain, it does not mean you need to live your life in fear.  Implement the above mentioned steps to reduce pain.  If and when it does arrive, turn to your stash of over-the-counter arthritis care products to seek relief.

Arthritis research