Arthritis occurs when there’s inflammation in the joints. It can occur in only one joint, but it often occurs in multiple joints at once. The first symptoms patients usually experience is a weakness in the affected joints and stiffness. Arthritis can hit at any age, but it will worsen with age. There is no cure for arthritis, but there are many treatments available. With osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis as the main types, it’s important to see a doctor at the first sign of symptoms to give treatment a better chance. Your doctor will prescribe medication that fits your personal needs. Below are some of the best arthritis medications available.
Analgesics are one of the first medications prescribed for arthritis. They are great for easing the pain. Some examples of analgesic include acetaminophen and tramadol. In cases where over-the-counter analgesics don’t work, your doctor might prescribe narcotics, like oxycodone or hydrocodone. Although a medication works for one person, it does not necessarily mean it will work for you. It usually takes trial and error to find an analgesic that really relieves the pain.
Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs
Inflammation makes arthritis worse, which is why nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are a great treatment option. Over-the-counter NSAIDs are usually the first step. These include Advil, Motrin IB, and Aleve. Take them with a light meal for the best results. If these do not help with the pain, your doctor can prescribe a stronger NSAID that will be more effective. There are also NSAID gels and creams that are very effective against arthritis since you can rub them directly into painful joints for fast relief. The gels and creams are often a starting point for many arthritis patients.
Counterirritants work similarly to NSAID creams since you run them directly on the achy joint. These creams and gels contain menthol or capsaicin as the main ingredient. They work by interrupting the pain signal from the joints, leading to a reduction or even elimination of pain. They only work for a short time, but for those able to use them, the relief is worth it.
An A2M injection is a more modern approach to treating arthritis, and many patients consider it a “miracle drug.” Your doctor delivers these injections directly to the affected joint to stop osteoarthritis in its tracks and reduce joint pain. The injections might be a little more expensive than traditional treatments since insurance does not yet cover them, but they’re worth it. When used early, A2M treatment can even stop arthritis from worsening while improving what’s already there.
If you or a loved one suffers from arthritis symptoms, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible. If left untreated, your joints will continue to deteriorate, leading to a lot more pain. With so many treatment options available, your doctor will go over each one and help you find the best one for you. With over 100 forms of arthritis in the world, there are many people out there suffering from arthritis.