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Treatments for Rheumatoid Arthritis

Early and aggressive treatments for rheumatoid arthritis can halt the progression of the disease and prevent symptoms from developing. Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic disease so no treatment will entirely cure it, but therapy for arthritis can put the patient in remission and delay its progression.

Treatment usually includes drugs, physical therapy, exercise, rest, and in some cases surgery.

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There are anti-rheumatic drugs that can be effective against rheumatoid arthritis. Methotrexate and leflunomide are most commonly prescribed. Sometimes anti-malarial drugs are used in conjunction with methotrexate. Because anti-rheumatic medications have pretty severe side effects, periodic blood tests are necessary to monitor any possible negative effects.

Along with anti-rheumatic drugs, anti-inflammatory medications are recommended. Aspirin and ibuprofen are most commonly used. Steriods are also used to reduce inflammation.

Surgery can be used to remove the joint lining to relieve pain and increase the range of motion. Joint replacement surgery can improve the quality of life.

There are natural remedies for rheumatoid arthritis. While they will not cure the disease, they may alleviate symptoms. Physical therapy and exercise can delay the onset of joint degradation. Hot and cold treatments can alleviate the pain and reduce inflammation.

Many natural medicine practitioners recommend increasing the intake of omega-3 fatty acids. This can by done by eating cold-water fish, walnuts, and flaxseed. Rheumatoid arthritis sufferers can also benefit by taking fish oil supplements.

Anti-inflammatory herbs may also help. Turmeric and ginger have strong anti-inflammatory properties.

Ample sleep also may help reduce rheumatoid arthritis symptoms. Eight to ten hours of sleep each night is recommended.


Rheumatoid Arthritis Information & Resources

Rheumatologist Doctor

What Is a Rheumatology Doctor?

Your First Visit to the Rheumatologist

What Are the Symptoms of Arthritis?

Treatment & Care of Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment Guides

Discussing Your Symptoms

Exercising With Rheumatoid Arthritis

Understanding Rheumatoid Arthritis Complications

Living With and Managing Your RA

Pain Management With RA

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