Winters mean stiff joints and painful muscles for many. While the more acute conditions need to be promptly shown to the doctor, joint pain caused by a sprain or mild arthritis can be relieved with helpful home remedies.
Instead of popping those pain killers, try these
The humble olive oil can go a long way in offering relief from joint pains. Here’s a quick remedy.
Massage cold compressed olive oil twice a day on the painful area. You can even take olive oil orally. Just 1.5 tablespoon of oil has the same effect as 200mg ibuprofen. Using cold compressed oil makes sure the medicinal properties of olive oil are not lost.
A few studies suggest that ginger has anti-inflammatory properties and helps curb pain-causing chemicals. Use ginger to make a hot compress for joint pain.
Add half a cup of fresh, grated ginger to 2 cups of water and bring it to boil. Let it simmer for 5 minutes. Add a washcloth in this mixture and let it steep for 15 minutes after turning off the heat. Squeeze well and spread this cloth on the painful areas and let it stay there till the cloth has cooled.
Soak your painful joints in Epsom salt. The magnesium sulfate in Epsom salt is absorbed through the skin and helps reduce inflammation.
Add half a cup of salt to a bowl of warm water and soak your painful joints in it for 15 minutes. If you have pain in multiple joints, adding two cups of salt to your bathtub is a great idea.
A home remedy, especially useful for painful knees.
Soak 2 tablespoons of fenugreek seeds overnight. Strain and consume the water. Blend the seeds in a blender and apply the paste on the affected knee. Fenugreek seeds possess anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties that work wonders in treating the pain.
Spices like cayenne pepper, ginger and turmeric contain compounds that reduce swelling and block a brain chemical that transmits pain signals.
If you have spices in regular meals like curries and flavored rice, that’s good enough. You could always consume some hot shorba or rasam as an accompaniment to your meal.
Sufficient vitamin D is known to aid in soothing the pain among those with rheumatoid arthritis.
A simple walk of 15 minutes in the sun or just sitting in the early morning sun soaking in the rays is enough to synthesize the required amount of vitamin D.
Here is a simple DIY garlic oil recipe that you can massage over painful joints. Take 3-4 buds of garlic; heat them in mustard oil for 3-5 minutes. Let the garlic turn brown and your oil is ready. You can apply this oil on the affected area.
Diet makes a lot of difference in managing pain. Studies have shown that Omega 3 fatty acids reduce inflammation and play a role in regulating the immune system. Seeds like flax and Chia or nuts like walnuts are a good source of Omega 3. Simply add them to your salads or smoothies. Here’s a quick recipe.
Chop a few tomatoes, walnuts, capsicum and basil leaves. Add a dressing made of 1 tsp. each of oil, powdered sugar, lemon juice and salt to taste. Toss them well and serve with sesame seeds. Your Omega 3-rich salad is ready!
Green tea is full of anti-oxidants and it is known to be highly effective in combating pain - especially caused by arthritis. Drinking 3-4 cups of green tea in a day should offer good results in combating pain.
Did you know? Each pound of body-weight equates to 3 lb. of added stress on the knees and 6 lb. of added pressure on the hip joint? Losing weight can help ease this pressure. Here’s a simple exercise that can help reduce hip pain.
The knee lift: Lie on your back and bring one knee up, closer to your chest. Place both your hands on the knee and pull it to your chest. Hold this position till 10 and then repeat. This can stretch muscles and improve mobility.
If your pain is the result of a fall or a sprain, PRICE can help. PRICE refers to -
If there is a mild sprain, rest the leg in an elevated position and use cold compression on the affected area to avoid swelling. Protect refers to protecting the joint from further injury. This home remedy is a great option for knee pain and frozen shoulder as well.
Frankincense (Salai in Hindi) is a tree that has been used in Ayurveda for pain relief. Use essential oil of Frankincense for massaging your joints. Combine 5-6 drops of pure frankincense oil in carrier oils like coconut oil and gently massage painful joints 2-3 times a day.
If you have been putting off joining the society yoga class, think again! Many yoga poses are beneficial for knee pain relief, stabilization as well as muscle strengthening.
Try the Bridge Pose, Bound Angle Pose, Garland Pose, Hero Pose or the Mountain Pose with guidance from a seasoned expert. Yoga can help relax muscles and regain strength and flexibility in joints.
At times, just changing your footwear can help in reducing painful and stiff joints. Footwear with Acupressure help relieve pain from arthritis or neck pain as these are designed to apply pressure on special acupressure points.
Curcumin, the major component of turmeric, is a powerful anti-inflammatory compound. It can help relieve joint pains and inflammation in the body.
Take a cup of milk, add 1 tsp. of ground turmeric, ¼ inch grated ginger and a pinch of black pepper and simmer well. After you turn off the heat, add some honey for taste and drink this warm, healthy potion.
This year, don't let the joint pain stop you from enjoying winter. Follow these simple home remedies and bid goodbye to your painful joints. However, if the pain persists do visit a certified medical practitioner.
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