Arthritis, though a normal part of aging, is nonetheless uncomfortable at best and extremely painful at worst. While it may be frustrating to deal with this condition and its symptoms day after day, you are not helpless. In addition to medical treatment, there are also natural ways that you can work through some of the pain.
If you are living with arthritis pain in your hands, try these five tips for relief:
1. Limit movement
One of the simplest ways to limit the pain caused by arthritis is to identify the movements that make the symptoms worse and put a pause on activities that require those activities, at least for the short term. A doctor may recommend wearing a splint for a while to help immobilize the area that's causing you pain.
2. Use ice and heat
Hot and cold may be opposites, but both can provide arthritis pain relief.
"An ice massage can do wonders for pain caused by physical activity," Scott Burg, DO wrote for Cleveland Clinic. "Take a piece of ice and rub it in a circular motion over your painful joint. Just don't do it for more than five minutes at a time so you don't irritate your skin. You can use an ice pack with a cover, too."
For heat, Burg recommended soaking your painful extremities in warm water.
3. Modify certain activities
There may be some motions that are exacerbating your condition that you can't give up altogether. In these cases, look for ways to modify these activities to create less strain on your hands. An occupational therapist may be helpful for identifying ways to adjust your grip and make similar changes to limit the stress put on painful areas.
4. Exercise your hands
There are a number of hand exercises that can provide relief from arthritis pain in the hands. For example, Mayo Clinic recommends the following stretch:
- Start with your hand in a relaxed position.
- Bend your thumb, crossing your palm and touching the base of your pinky finger. If you can't reach that far, just stretch as close to the base as you can.
- Return your thumb to the relaxed position.
- Repeat the exercise several times with each hand.
Your doctor or occupational therapist can help you decide which stretches and exercises will be most beneficial for your arthritis.
5. Wear IMAK® Compression Arthritis Gloves
Alleviating arthritis pain doesn't need to be a difficult task. Sometimes it's as easy as slipping on a glove. The IMAK Compression Arthritis Gloves were designed to reduce pain and promote healing through mild compression. They increase circulation and help relieve the stiffness and achiness that come from arthritis in the hands, helping you live your normal life without discomfort.
Note: Any natural remedies for arthritis pain relief should be discussed with your physician to ensure optimal health and safety.