50% adults will develop arthritic knees in their lifetime. That’s a huge number of arthritis sufferers. With that large number comes an equally large number of remedies and therapies in the marketplace.
No one therapy will be effective for everyone though, so don’t be discouraged if you can’t find a winning combination right away. It may take some time.
There are 2 main options arthritis sufferers can try.
Change Your Lifestyle for Arthritis
- Too much weight can cause added pressure on knees. Losing only 10 pounds can remove 40 pounds of pressure on your knees.
- Aerobic activity keeps these joints flexible, while strength training can strengthen the supporting muscles.
- Supportive devices like canes, crutches, or walkers can help take weight off painful hips. Splints and braces can restrict movement, which helps limit your pain.
- Adjust your positioning frequently. Try not to stay in one position for an extended period. Periodically tilt your neck from side to side, change the position of your hands, and bend and stretch your legs.
- Hot and cold treatments can relax muscles and reduce pain and swelling.
Manage Arthritis Pain with Medication
- Over-the-counter painkillers like Tylenol can be used when other methods don’t provide enough relief.
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) like Ibuprofen, Motrin, or Aleve are the next step in pain relief. These medications offer a pain reliever with an anti-inflammatory built in.
- Topical treatments like creams and gels may help joint pain close to the surface of the skin, like fingers and toes.
- Injections of steroids or cortisone by a doctor are an effective way to relieve moderate to severe swelling in the knees and hips.
- Opioid painkillers are strong, but can be addictive.