Arthritis pain is a common complaint in the U.S. In fact, nearly 60 million Americans suffer from arthritis symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. If you're among the many people who are struggling to manage arthritis pain and stiffness, your San Antonio, TX, family physician, Dr. Dan Hoyumpa of Texan Family Clinic, can offer helpful treatments.
How arthritis affects you
Arthritis inflames the tissues in your joints, causing pain and stiffness. Osteoarthritis, the most common type of arthritis, usually develops after years of wear and tear destroys the protective cartilage at the ends of the bones in a joint. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition that causes your body's immune system to mistakenly attack the bones and cartilage in your joints, damaging them.
No matter what type of arthritis you have, you may experience:
- Joint pain
- Stiffness, particularly first thing in the morning or after you've been inactive for a while
- Trouble walking
- Reduced range of motion
- Joint tenderness
- Swelling, redness or warmth around your joint
What you can do to control your symptoms
Taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like ibuprofen and naproxen sodium can be helpful. These medications reduce inflammation and swelling and help keep your pain and stiffness under control. You may also find that heat, whether from a hot shower or heating pad, or ice eases your symptoms.
If you still have arthritis pain, it's a good idea to call your San Antonio, TX, family doctor. He can discuss other treatment options with you, including:
- Prescription medication that helps control pain and inflammation better than over-the-counter medication
- Oral or injectable corticosteroids that relieve joint inflammation and pain
- Biologics or disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs that prevent your immune system from triggering inflammation if you have rheumatoid arthritis
- Physical therapy to strengthen the muscles that support your joints and improve stiffness and range of motion
- Surgery to fuse bones, replace damaged joints or remove inflamed tissue, loose cartilage or bone spurs.
Don't let arthritis pain interfere with your life! Call your family physician in San Antonio, TX, Dr. Hoyumpa of Texan Family Clinic, at (210) 562-3125 to schedule your appointment.