Arthritis Pain Doesn’t Have to Alter Your Life: A Customized Treatment Can Help

arthritis pain

More than 100 different diseases fall under the umbrella term ‘arthritis.’ These many conditions have several things in common: they affect the joints, they are all degenerative, progressive, and there’s no cure for any of them. Even with all that, there are also some critical differences.

The best treatment plan for you depends on many factors, and the type of arthritis you have is just one of them. Some forms of arthritis, like rheumatoid arthritis, are disorders of your immune system, while others like osteoarthritis, are mechanical in nature. The approaches to treating diseases that stem from differing causes are, as you might imagine, often quite different.

Here are a few of the ways that a comprehensive pain management plan can be customized to fit your individual needs.

Tailoring your lifestyle

No one is perfect, and there are tweaks we could all make to our lifestyles to improve our overall health. Whether you need to lose a few pounds, quit smoking, or address other lifestyle changes, there are probably things you could do that should be part of your comprehensive arthritis pain management plan.

Some of the lifestyle factors you may want to consider include:

Finding the right medications

Taking medicine can feel like a challenge. You may not like swallowing pills, or you may not like the side effects of your medicines, but finding the right medications for you is an important part of your treatment plan.

Arthritis is an inflammatory condition. Your joints are inflamed, swollen, and painful. Medications that can lower your level of inflammation can slow down joint damage.

Our doctors may also suggest injections for your arthritis pain and inflammation. Injections deliver medicine directly to the affected joint, and many people find they can be a critical part of an effective, comprehensive treatment plan.

Physical therapy and other treatments

Although you may associate physical therapy with exercise, physical therapy can be an effective pain management tool on its own. Your physical therapist works with you individually to help you strengthen the muscles and other soft tissues that support your damaged joints. When those supporting tissues are stronger, there’s less stress on your joints.

Other treatments you may not be aware of include hot and cold therapy, the use of braces and other external supports, and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS). TENS uses low-voltage, gentle electrical pulses to disrupt the pain signals your nerves send.

There are also new treatments, called biologics, that are available for certain types of arthritis. Biologics are generally given as injections and infusions and have been shown to slow joint degradation in some circumstances.

The goal of a comprehensive pain management plan is to help you live a full, active life, even if you have arthritis. Because there are so many different types of arthritis, and because your goals are unique to your situation, your comprehensive pain management plan must be designed specifically for you.

If you’d like to learn more about how our team at Ohio Institute for Comprehensive Pain Management can help you find an appropriate, effective approach to managing your arthritis pain, book an appointment online or by phone today.

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