Osteoarthritis is the wear and tear we do when we overuse our joints. It is the most common form of arthritis. It usually occurs with age but can also develop from injuries of the joints or even obesity.
The most common joints that are at risk are the joints that bear weight such as hips, knees, feet and spine. It often appears gradually over months or years. Your affected joints will hurt but you will not feel sick or tired that occurs with other types of arthritis.
What happens to our body is that we lose cartilage. Cartilage is the lubricating material that covers the ends of our bones. You could think of it as the shock absorber for our body. Over time for various reasons our cartilage breaks down.
Damaged cartilage makes movement painful and you may even hear a grating sound. This is from the cartilage wearing away and the bones are rubbing together. This can cause painful spurs on the ends of bones, notably on the feet and fingers. It’s not unusual for the lining of the joints to become inflamed with this type of arthritis.
Some symptoms that you may feel depending on which joints are affected are: aching pain, trouble with hold things well, pain in or unable to bend over, climb stairs, walking, or squatting. Stiffness can last about thirty minutes in the morning but reoccur after resting. Your joints may become warm to the touch, swollen, and unable to move in a full range of motion.
There are a few things that you may do to naturally relieve some or most pain depending on how debilitating it has become. Here are a few ways that have been able to help others.
If you are overweight, then losing as little as ten to twenty pounds can take pressure off your joints. Regular movement helps keep your joints flexible. Try low-impact exercise to help without adding more stress to your body. Warm showers or baths will help loosen your joints in the morning. Cold packs are great for relieving inflammation.
Diet plays a key in our everyday health. Omega 3 fatty acids have been shown to reduce joint stiffness and pain. So make sure to add fish, walnuts, chia and flax seeds, green vegetables and wild rice to your diet. Turmeric is a spice that has anti-inflammatory properties that reduce the pain associated with arthritis.
There are also many supplements that are known to help reduce inflammation and pain from arthritis. To make sure these supplements don’t affect any other medication you are taking ask your doctor first. Here are a few you may be able to try: Boswellia, bromelain, gingko and stinging nettle.
If you are interested in essential oils there are a few that have the best COX-2 chemical inhibitors are: fennel, thyme, myrrh, clove, cinnamon, eucalyptus, and bergamot. These essential oils work in the same way that aspirin, ibuprofen, and Celebrex do.
Nitric oxide causes joint destruction in arthritis. Essential oils that decrease nitric oxide in the body are: peppermint, oregano, lemongrass, tea tree oil, dill, lime, nutmeg, frankincense, tangerine, myrtle, lavender, patchouli, eucalyptus, clove, and juniper.
As you can see there are many essential oils that work so if one doesn’t suit you there is another one to try. You can put it in a salve or in a rollerball with a carrier oil. Never use essential oils directly on the skin.