Cure for Rheumatoid Arthritis?
I recently saw on Pinterest numerous postings where they “cured” their RA with diet or supplements or exercise. I have not found any medical evidence to “cure” RA. I have found plenty of references to managing your RA symptoms. It really makes me angry that they are out there promoting a “cure” which is not supported by medical science. I hope every day for a cure. I hope every day for feeling normal again. There are studies, which suggest that remission of symptoms is more likely when treatment begins early with strong medications (DMARDs). So, let’s be honest with each other. There is no known cure for Rheumatoid Arthritis at this time.
Managing your symptoms is the best hope that we have. Here are some quick tips to help manage your RA symptoms.
- Talk to your doctor and be honest with your doctor. If you are not feeling fine, tell him/her. Keep a journal of your symptoms.
2. Try to lead a stress free life. Yeah, right! I commute three days a week. My evening commute is 2 hours (one way) in stop and go traffic. I manage people and deal with complicated situations. I listen to audiobooks on Audible Amazon. If it were not for them, my commute would be intolerable. I get so engrossed in my book that the person riding on my bumper or cutting me off doesn’t bother me. If I feel stressed at work, I shut my office door and take a time out. I breathe in and out and think about each breath as I am doing it. I have a mat that I put on my floor to lay on and I shut my eyes for five minutes. I take a walk around the building. I take myself out to lunch with a book to read. I find ways to get my mind off whatever is causing the stress.
3. I gave up pottery when I started having joint pain. I no longer enjoyed the activity because it became too painful. I regret giving it up. However, I have taken up gardening, riding a bike, and swimming. These activities help me to feel good and keep me focused. Try to keep doing the things you love.
4. Pay attention to your emotions. When I am in pain, I usually become short-tempered, inpatient, anxious, angry or depressed. Being aware that the pain is causing these emotions, helps me to keep them from spilling over onto my coworkers, friends and family. You might explore joining a support group. I search the internet looking for quotes and cartons from people who understand RA firsthand. It is my way of validating how I feel and what I feel.
5. I have heat and cold packs. The rule of thumb is to use an ice pack on an inflamed area and a heat pack to warm up a stiff joint. Gentle massage might also give you some relief when your symptoms are mild. Sometimes, I don’t know how to treat the pain because the inflammation and the stiffness is happening at the same time. My doctor told me to try ice or heat first and if it doesn’t work try to the other. She also said that alternating ice and heat could help at times. The majority of time, using just ice is enough to give me some temporary relief. I can’t count the number of times I have driven to work with an ice pack around one of my joints.
6. Boy, the next one is a hard one. What is the last thing that we all feel like doing when we are struggling with fatigue, joint pain, stiff joints, dry eyes, and dry mouth? Do you have it yet? The answer is exercise. There are days when I come home from work and I am exhausted. The thought of lifting a remote seems too much to handle both mentally and physically. However, if you can tolerate exercise, it really does make your joints feel better (in the end). I would talk to your doctor before taking on any specific activity. Find the one that makes sense to you and that you can tolerate. If you hate jogging as I do, setting a goal of jogging one mile a day is a recipe for disaster. However, if you enjoy walking, swimming, or biking, finding a way to incorporate that activity into your daily or weekly routine will probably be more successful. I also do yoga a couple of times of week for several reasons. One is to help with my stress and the second is to help stretch my body.
7. Eat a balanced diet. Focus on fruits, veggies, whole grains, and lean protein. My standby diet is the Mediterranean diet. I am constantly experimenting with diets to see if one diet or the other helps me to manage my symptoms. I always go back to the Mediterranean diet. It just makes sense to me. I have listed my favorite Mediterranean cookbooks below which can be purchased through Amazon. If you are new to cooking or Mediterranean cooking, a great cooking class can be found through the following link. I do not get paid to advertise for them and I am in no way associated with them. I love to cook and have taken several of their cooking classes, one of them was this class. I loved the class and the recipes.