What is the best treatment for osteoarthritis: Anti-inflammatories are not the only option! Natural medicines also offer basic treatments to treat osteoarthritis and have less pain.
Osteoarthritis is a chronic condition associated with degeneration of articular cartilage accompanied by an increase in bone tissue.
Without infection or inflammation, atrophy results in pain, stiffness, and joint dysfunction.
What is the best treatment for osteoarthritis
Here are four natural solutions to treat it.
1. Glucosamine and chondroitin to protect cartilage
“Some studies show that chondroitin and glucosamine slow down cartilage degradation, especially when osteoarthritis starts,” says Dr. Philippe Veroli.
These two substances present in the joints are part of the composition of proteoglycans, molecules that retain water and give elasticity to cartilage.
With osteoarthritis, the body can not produce them properly. But they can be taken orally.
How to use them?
It is a background treatment, to be taken daily. 1,200 mg of chondroitin and 1,500 mg of glucosamine are combined in two or three doses.
The first effects are felt after two to eight weeks, but it is advisable to follow courses of three months.
These two substances are often extracted from shells of crustaceans, so be careful of a possible allergic risk!
2. The harpagophytum, to fight against inflammation due to osteoarthritis
How does it work?
The “devil’s claw” has certain anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties.
“Some of its compounds, such as harpagoside, have an action comparable to that of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs,” says Dr. Jean-Michel Morel, a phytotherapist.
“They inhibit the formation of an enzyme that participates in the inflammatory process. ”
Harpagophytum is effective against osteoarthritis of large joints such as the knee, hip or shoulder.
How to use it?
It is mainly a preventive treatment designed to reduce the frequency of attacks and their intensity.
“We must focus on capsules dry extract, more effective than the root powder,” says Dr. Morel.
We take two to four grams a day for 20 days. Beware however the risk of interactions with certain drugs (antihypertensives)!
3. The essential oil of wintergreen to soothe the osteoarthritis crisis
How does it work?
It is composed of 99% methyl salicylate, an analgesic and anti-inflammatory substance very close to aspirin.
“It’s a small molecule,” says Dr. Morel. Used in massage, it penetrates very easily to the joint. | What is the best treatment for osteoarthritis |
How to use it?
Two drops are diluted in a teaspoonful of neutral vegetable oil, and the painful area is massaged until it warms up. to repeat twice a day for a week.
“The pharmacist can also make a preparation combining wintergreen with other essential oils, such as lemon eucalyptus, which works in synergy,” adds Dr. Morel.
Essential oils are contraindicated in pregnant women, and you should always check that you do not risk an allergic reaction.
To know if we do not risk an allergic reaction, we test the essential oil by depositing a drop deposited at the fold of the elbow.
4. Move to slow down the process
Why does it work?
Regular mobilization of the joint prevents it from sticking.
“Stretches, combined with strengthening exercises, maintain the muscles around, and reduce painful contractures,” adds Dr. Gilles Mondolini.
How to do?
“The exercises are to be repeated two or three times a week, except in times of crisis when the joint must remain at rest,” recalls Dr. Mondolini.
• For cervicals: simply stretch your neck by tilting your head from side to side. To strengthen the muscles, hold a towel wrapped around the back of the skull, and push the head from side to side, in resistance.
• For the knee: on the back, bend the leg and bring the knee towards you, holding the ankle with your hands.
• For the fingers: to massage them one after the other, from bottom to top, allows to stretch them without forcing.
Some nutrients have a beneficial effect on osteoarthritis
This is the case of omega-3 fatty fish in particular, which have powerful anti-inflammatory properties, and antioxidant vitamins and trace elements, such as copper, silicon, selenium, and vitamins C and E.
“Silicon gels feed the tissues of the joints,” says Dr. Morele. They help maintain flexibility and reduce pain. “