This is my very first post but it not my first battle with rheumatoid arthritis. A lot of you might live with someone who suffers from this and a lot of you might be suffering from it yourselves and you are searching for something that works. In this post I what to explain what rheumatoid arthritis is, how rheumatoid arthritis is diagnosed, what helps rheumatoid arthritis, what causes rheumatoid arthritis flare-ups, what helps rheumatoid arthritis pain and also the best natural rheumatoid arthritis treatment.
What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis – Made Simple
Rheumatoid arthritis is an auto-immune disease which basically means that your immune system is attacking itself or in this case. Your immune system is attacking your joints causing inflammation. It is like having a fever, when you catch a cold your bodies defense can cause a fever as it is trying to fight of the bacteria causing you to feel ill. The same thing is happening here. Your body is trying to fight something that it thinks is bad, causing inflammation in your joint.
How Is Rheumatoid Arthritis Diagnosed
I can remember going through that myself. I have always had Rheumatoid Arthritis or R.A. but the doctor never wanted to give me the diagnosis. It was not until I was 16 that I actually got diagnosed. I had to go into an R.A. clinic where they first just look at your joints to see if there is any obvious swelling, they then proceeded to feel the joints and also asking you to move your hands, legs, fingers etc to see if there is any soreness. If you have R.A. there will most likely be swelling in the joints almost always visible but sometimes not. It might be uncomfortable and painful, warm to the touch but when pressing on your joints there will be a feeling of fluid or thickness. Pressing on the joints can be extremely painful. After these small tests the usually finish with a blood test that will determine for sure if you have Rheumatoid Arthritis. If you have R.A. you will most likely have an elevated erythrocyte sedimentation rate, basically how fast your red blood cells settles. Their reaction can indicate if you have an ongoing inflammation in your body. They will test for various things when taking a blood test.
What Causes Rheumatoid Arthritis Flare Ups
This can be tricky. Speaking from my own experience it can be pretty much anything or everything.
Every person is different in this aspect. However I will try to assist with this to the best of my abilities. I have noticed that if I accidentally hit my finger it will most likely cause not only extreme pain but also trigger an arthritis flare up. My arthritis is located in my fingers, wrists and feet. If I over use my hands I will more than likely start to feel my wrists getting sore. More than anything I will feel flare-ups from the food I am eating. Rheumatoid Arthritis can be view a bit like an allergy, if you remove what is causing the allergy you will not get any symptoms of it. If I eat something that is highly inflammatory then I will more than likely feel it the day after. Fatigue is also something that can be view as a flare up that comes with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Sometimes you will not experience any pain but you might get extremely tired and it feels like you can sleep for days. This is a part of R.A.
Your body is continuously fighting against what is “attacking” it, so just like when you get sick your body gets tired and needs rest. This is how a body with R.A. works constantly. It is always fighting the illness and it will get tired. It might not be your typical flare up but it sure does count. This can happen if you have done too much, pushed yourself a little too hard, not taken enough break. It can end up with you spending the next few days being exhausted and just wanting to spend time in bed, sleeping.
What Helps Rheumatoid Arthritis Pain
I have always been against “normal” medications and treatments but I am going to go through them anyways.
Being on treatment is something that can help you tremendously. This might be enough for you. There are a bunch of different types of medications and treatments for this. The standard one being Methotrexate. There are also a number of injections for this that are becoming increasingly popular and do seem to help most people. Staying on your treatment is always a start and like I said this might be enough to help your pain and keep your illness under control. If you experience acute pain, I always try to stay away from it, but when I do experience acute pain a regular Panadol might do the trick.
For some people a nice hot bath might work. When I feel my joints starting to ache I prefer to throw my self a warm bath, I will bring my tablet in to the bathroom and watch a movie whilst I am constantly adding more warm water into the bath. Sometimes putting a bandage of for some extra support might feel nice as this will restrict your movement, hence you will not be able to move in a way that will cause pain, this however is not something you want to be doing for a long period of time as bandaging it might actually have the opposite effect long term.
What Is The Best Natural Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment
This is a question that have many answers. I have been living with R.A. since early childhood, no treatment have ever really worked for me. I would always be asked to switch to a different treatment or I would get extremely ill. Since, if you did not already know, R.A. medication is designed to lower your immune system. As R.A. is an auto-immune disease, it will attack itself. By lowering your immune system, your body will not be able to attack itself to the same extent. This can however cause a lot of other issues, such as frequently getting sick and you might also get a bunch of exiting side effects from your medications. I am pretty sure I have been trough 95% of them by now.
I started researching how to treat Rheumatoid Arthritis naturally, I was reading books, meeting leading doctors in how to naturally heal your body. Their research leads back to ancient times.
First of all what you eat have a major effect on your R.A. If you put diesel in a petrol car this will more than likely not work very well. The same goes with R.A. If you feed your body the wrong kinds of fuels your body will not go very far, it might cough a long for a bit of the way but will more than likely come to an abrupt stop.
By following a specific diet I have been able to be symptom free for 2 years. It wasn’t until I started steering of my diet that all my R.A. related pains and problems came back. I was symptom free, without medications just by changing my diet and my habits.
If you are open to change and want to give it a go here are the basics of what I did.
Stop eating dairy, nightshades and limit your meat intake.
Go to the gym or start exercising. Why? Around your joints are muscles, your muscles will be able to help your joints when they do get painful. Kind of like silver tape. It will hold it together for a bit longer.
Reduce your sugar intake. Sugar is highly allergenic and is a huge factor to inflammation.
Increase your vitamin intake -glucosamine, fish oils, B-vitamins. They are extremely good for your body especially when you are suffering from R.A.
Gluten like its cousin sugar is also highly inflammatory.
What I did was that I excluded pretty much everything from my diet. Back to basics. Then I slowly started adding something in to see if this would cause any discomfort or pain the next day. If I felt the slightest pain after eating something I would write that on my maybe list. If I got extreme pain and swelling or just felt really off I would put that on my NO! list. If I did not experience anything I would keep it on my Yes! list.
I am not a doctor but I do not know a life without Rheumatoid Arthritis. I have had it since being a child. It was not until I was in my early 20s that I thought ” I do not want to live my life, trapped by this, I need a change” I started researching. I started to treat R.A. Not as a disease but an allergy, the inflammation is only a symptom of the disease. By treating the inflammation with regular medications we are only treating the symptoms but not the real cause.
If you can view R.A. from this point of view all of a sudden a new world has opened up. A life without medications. I have noticed a big difference in my over all health since steering of my diet. I instantly had to go back on medications, I gained weight due to my cortisone treatment. I am now more determined than ever to get back to a life without medications.
Which ever way you look at it, R.A. can be an extremely painful way of life and sometimes it is worth taking a chance. Because you know what, it might just change everything.