Finding Relief From Chronic Joint Pain Naturally With Herbs
Conventional medicine has been of immense benefit since the time of its inception. From way back in the early ages in Egypt where the essentials of medicine were first discovered and it was used in the preservation of dead bodies. Bodies were embalmed and mummified. This knowledge evolved into understanding and using herbs for healing. As time progressed, and with the advancement in science and technology, research was carried out in various health fields. Such research aided the understanding of the basic constituents and key components of plants that were helpful to man.
Things went a notch higher when these plant compounds could be extracted and used to produce drugs that were of immense benefit to man. This enabled pharmacists and scientists to combine essential compounds from varying plants and infuse into a drug that could treat a couple of illnesses. However, some illnesses have not been effectively treated by these drugs. Based on the absorption mechanism of the drug into the GI tract it becomes difficult to use them in treating illnesses that don’t necessarily have to be treated through that mechanism. Illnesses such as epilepsy, glaucoma, arthritis, chronic pain, and many more have not been so responsive to drugs.
For these types of illnesses, other approaches have to be considered, also an approach of least side effect. Herbs have been in use for a very long time and still remains a highly effective treatment option. One reason is that herbs can be used and absorbed into the body via a variety of routes. It can be taken orally, through the membranes when vaped, or as used in aromatherapy, it can be ground into a paste-like solution and applied to the body directly as seen in massage therapy. For this article, we would focus on the efficacy of herbs as a treatment for chronic joint pain as well as a couple of herbs that can be used.
The eucalyptus is an Australian plant that has immense anti-inflammatory benefits which makes it very useful in treating chronic joint pain. Interestingly, the eucalyptus plant has been around for 3500 years! The essential part of the plant that eases chronic pain is the leaf. It contains tannins, which is the active compound that reduces swelling and pain. Eucalyptus is an essential ingredient used in most ointments for arthritis. It is highly effective for joint and back pain as well. Eucalyptus oil can also be used to treat pain. It is high in pinene and cineole which are key healing ingredients.
Ginger is a rhizome and rootstock plant native to Asia, especially Japan, China, and India. However, it is often associated with China. It has been around for 5000 years and has long been used as a healing herb. Having been first discovered by Confucius. The spice comes from the root of the plant as well as its healing properties. Research has shown that eating ginger regularly helps relieve osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. It also helps reduce the pain that comes with using other painkillers. Ginger has anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, as well as anti-cancer properties. Thus making it adequate for acute pain. The anti-inflammatory properties function similarly to the COX-2 inhibitor.
Turmeric is a yellow-coloured plant whose use dates back 4000 years ago. It was used in Vedic culture as a seasoning and for religious purposes before its healing properties were identified. Turmeric originates from India and is a close relative of ginger. Turmeric’s most active ingredient is curcumin which has been discovered to have anti-inflammatory properties that help relieve pain. Research also shows that turmeric was as effective as Ibuprofen as a treatment for osteoarthritis. It has also been proven that turmeric helps with rheumatoid arthritis, post-surgery inflammation, and other forms of pain.
Willow bark has been used for over 200 years as a healing ingredient especially in China where the plant originates from. But it was first used in 5.B.C by Hippocrates to help with his inflammation. The active ingredient in willow bark is salicin and most time it is being used as a replacement for aspirin. It also has anti-inflammatory properties that when combined with its main compound becomes a highly effective healing herb for back pain, headache, waist pain, as well as joint pain. However, it is important to get the right dosage so as to avoid complications. Also, ensure you aren’t allergic before using it.
Cannabis has been discovered to be of immense health benefits. It originates from central Asia, particularly India. Cannabis was first used 3000 years ago by the Hindus in the meal and for spiritual rites. Cannabis is a versatile plant that has numerous health benefits ranging from epilepsy, glaucoma, and importantly chronic pain. In recent years, cannabis has been used as a drug to treat the above-listed illnesses and more. Precisely, chronic pain was recently introduced as one of the qualifying conditions to use marijuana in some U.S. states and patients’ application almost doubled. That is an indication of how effective medical marijuana for pain is.
Cannabis has three types of variations also called strains. They include cannabis Sativa, Indica, and hybrid. The sativa has an energizing effect on the body and mind, the indica has a relaxing and sedating effect while the hybrid combines the two. The indica is the most preferred option as regards to treating chronic joint pain. Its anti-inflammatory properties found in the plant’s two active cannabinoids known as CBD(Cannabidiol) and THC(Tetrahydrocannabinol) help it achieve that effect. When cannabis is taken it goes to the endocannabinoid system in the brain. This activates the brain’s reward system and reduces pain.