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Stiff Hands - Arthritis?

stephanie447stephanie447 Ayurvedic PractitionerAnnapolis, MDPosts: 320 ✭✭✭

I may be going to see a rheumatologist. I'm 50 and my hands are getting more painful and stiff when I wake up. I already wear arthritis gloves when I sleep. Is it just plain vanilla arthritis or rheumatoid arthritis? Either way, what are some natural and herbal ways of dealing with this?

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  • SharieSharie Posts: 195 ✭✭✭

    Eliminate all dairy for a month and see if that helps. My friend's lumpy fingers vanished after years of trying many things. Also, you could rub magnesium oil on your hands. Ancient Minerals is the brand I use. Very effective for many sore body parts, muscles, joints, etc.

  • shllnzlshllnzl Southwestern UtahPosts: 1,531 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @stephanie447 Rheumatoid arthritis joints are supposed to feel warm. You would probably feel it in more than one area.

    I have severe osteoarthritis in my hands and less severe forms elsewhere. I find that my hands will throb if I eat too many foods in the nightshade family such as tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, etc. Arthritis gloves help me a lot.

    Food elimination diets would be the best way to find your triggers.

    I think that most of my arthritis pain and lack of inflammation are due to my intake of turmeric. As you probably know, turmeric is also good for many other health issues as well.

  • annbeck62annbeck62 Posts: 420 ✭✭✭

    Besides magnesium oil and turmeric, mustard oil is also good.

    I also was on a retreat a few years ago where the food was vegan. One of the participants (who was not vegan at home) had severe osteoarthritis and by the end of the retreat had no pain for the first time in years.

  • marjstrattonmarjstratton Posts: 349 ✭✭✭
    edited February 15

    @annbeck62 That is very interesting about the person at the retreat who recovered so amazingly after going vegan for just a relatively short time.

  • toreytorey Posts: 2,907 admin

    @stephanie447 Trust your Ayurvedic training. Here is a link to an article by KP Khalsa on inflammation, herbs that will assist and dosages. And links to other resources.

    https://internationalintegrative.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/Inflammation.pdf

  • monica197monica197 Posts: 816 ✭✭✭✭

    I have found that idiopathic pains here and there around my body completely go away when I completely eliminate sugar, bread, starch, high sugar fruits and vegetables, and limit fruit to only 16oz total per day

    Once my body is in an inflammatory cycle any sugar IMMEDIATELY gets it going. I am not sure why this continues to amaze and shock me but it does. Fluid retention goes down, puffiness goes down.

    I have found that if I keep re-initiating the inflammatory cycle it does not matter what supplements I take or what extra stuff I do, I must stop inflaming myself first.

  • stephanie447stephanie447 Ayurvedic Practitioner Annapolis, MDPosts: 320 ✭✭✭

    Thanks for all the suggestions. Already have done the food sensitivity testing, don't do sugar, etc., am on a variety of anti-inflammatory supplements. Maybe I just need to up my turmeric intake. I have to do more research on the difference between osteoarthritis vs. rheumatoid arthritis and do want to get tested to see what exactly is. I'm terribly not helpful with treating myself because I'm too close to it.

    I do have some magnesium oil that I will try, and I also tried a bit of mahanarayan oil today, which is an Ayurvedic oil. Also, the red light therapy pad I have seems to help.

  • marjstrattonmarjstratton Posts: 349 ✭✭✭

    I have arthritis that flares up especially if I have to do a lot of repetitive things like I had to do when I was working. I even went to physical therapy for arthritis in my shoulders. I haven't really managed to figure out what food triggers I might have. I really should plan out an elimination diet to see if I can pinpoint any thing. I do use magnesium oil on my feet when they get particularly cranky.

  • monica197monica197 Posts: 816 ✭✭✭✭
  • jolanta.wittibjolanta.wittib Posts: 524 admin

    I found these recipes in a book “Herbs and Weeds” by Pfarrer Künzle. He writes a lot about using fern (Dryopteris filix) for rheumatic problems. Only external use! He also suggests a herbal mixture. Well, these are old recipes, but who knows...

    “1. Take one or two fern roots, that are more or less still fresh (dried and cut ones lose their strength in a few days), cut them up into small pieces, but do not wash them, put everything in a sack and put it or tie this sack on to the painful area and leave it there until the pain is gone. Quite often all the pain is gone after just half a day. - If the whole back is affected, you need more roots and a longer sack and you have to lie on it.

    2. If you cannot or do not want to stay in bed, then bathe and massage the sick limb for half an hour in the fern root bath.

    3. When in bed apply juniper poultice, over the painful areas.

    4. Before going to bed, drink elderberry or Meadowsweet (Spiraea ulmaria), boiled in wine.

    Do it four to six days and you will be cured. But, if your rheumatism did not appear all of a sudden, but has already been there for years, or if you are 60 or more years old yourself, take the herbal bath on one day, the juniper poultice on the next day, drink daily herbal tea from birch leaves, Meadowsweet, Spiny restharrow (Ononis spinosa) and Lady’s bedstraw (Galium verum). Take a sip of it about every hour, then you can be cured in three to six weeks, depending on the depth and length of your illness.”

    May be one could make use of these advices...

  • shllnzlshllnzl Southwestern UtahPosts: 1,531 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @stephanie447 The doctor can do blood work looking for either rheumatoid or psoariatic arthritis markers.

  • happy-trailshappy-trails Posts: 157 ✭✭✭

    stephanie447

    I've read that rheumatoid arthritis is linked to an autoimmune issue, with your body creating antibodies that are attacking the joints... the root problem being in the gut. Have you tried collagen and drinking bone broth regularly? These are gut healing, joint healing (amino acids like glycine), and the broth contains sulfur in the form of MSM, reducing joint inflammation greatly, as well as promoting regeneration of your tissues. Truly amazing. There are other foods high in sulfur like garlic and onions. Those with rheumatoid arthritis seem to have very low cortisol levels (cortisol is an anti-inflammatory hormone), but taking a high dosage of potassium helps bring the cortisol back up to normal. The potassium you can get as a supplement (citrate form).

    Of course an anti-inflammatory diet is a must. My sciatica/back pain and overall stiffness and joint pain is impressively reduced when I am drinking a cup or two of bone broth every day! I consume ceylon cinnamon and juice turmeric as well. I believe it's been documented that food with high omega 3 content helps arthritis as well, and I take cod liver oil religiously for the many benefits. I really believe cod liver oil is one of the best things we can invest in for overall health. It seems like I remember hearing that some holistic doctors recommend a bromelain supplement to be taken along with cod liver oil on an empty stomach for instant relief of arthritis symptoms.

    I'm sure you're already avoiding trigger foods that worsen the condition, but just in case... some of the things you definitely want to avoid are the conventional trash in most "foods" like high gluten, sugar, and hydrogenated oil. The last things two things I want to mention are: have you heard that vegetables in the nightshade family can cause arthritis pain/symptoms too? Also, I think I remember colostrum being mentioned in some articles I've read, for healing joint pain. I don't know much about these last things I mentioned, but may be worth researching for yourself!

  • stephanie447stephanie447 Ayurvedic Practitioner Annapolis, MDPosts: 320 ✭✭✭

    Thanks for all the suggestions. I had a whole rheumatoid/autoimmune panel done - it was negative. Had my hands x-rayed today - bones were normal. I haven't talked to my doctor since the x-ray but when I spoke to him a few days ago he thought a lot of my other symptoms were related to menopause and thus hormonal. In doing more research apparently fluctuating hormones in menopause can cause a lot of inflammation!

    Well, at least I don't have autoimmune! I think I may try adding shatavari to my daily herbs - it's an Ayurvedic herb often used for menopause.

  • SuperCSuperC Cook at Wahlburgers The Frozen Tundra in the Northern MidwestPosts: 371 ✭✭✭

    I eat no nightshades as they cause arthritis flare ups. (Tomatoes, sweet and spicy peppers, eggplant, paprika, all potatoes)

  • KelleyKelley Posts: 139 ✭✭✭

    I don't sell it, but Melaleuca's Pain-a-trate works miracles

  • AmrikAmrik Posts: 9 ✭✭✭

    Try a homeopathic remedy. Rhustox 200 potency once daily for about a week. Clean your mouth with plain warm water before taking dose. Do not use any mouth wash or eat anything at the same time because that will nullify the effect of remedy. If it is possible to get Rhustox CM potency then dose is once a moth. When your symptoms clear and after couple of more doses they reappear stop taking the remedy. That makes the treatment complete and you do not need any more remedy. You are cured!

  • ltwickeyltwickey Posts: 330 ✭✭✭

    @stephanie447 that is great news that it is not autoimmune!! Big relief for you I bet!

    I know when I started menopause, I noticed more ankle, knee and wrist pain and my provider said the same thing, menopause... the fluctuating and eventual decline of estrogen is the culprit... aging is not for the faint of heart!!

  • DurwardPlessDurwardPless Posts: 163 ✭✭✭

    I believe the first step is to eliminate gluten for an extended time and slowly reintroduce it.

  • stephanie447stephanie447 Ayurvedic Practitioner Annapolis, MDPosts: 320 ✭✭✭
    edited February 27

    Thanks, I already tried that. I also had a food sensitivity test done and don't have an issue with gluten protein. Dairy (cow milk) came up so I avoid that or just have a small amount once in a while, but even taking that out of my diet doesn't have any noticeable impact. One of my next steps is to try different soap/shampoo. I'm not hugely chemical sensitive but dryer sheets and liquid fabric softener (at least the chemical kind) causes a mild allergic reaction.

  • aprilbbrinkmanaprilbbrinkman Posts: 253 ✭✭✭

    Hi @stephanie447 cannabis will be a great herb for you to try!!! I'd experiment smoking it and also edibles. I've started drinking "golden green dream milk" each night before I rest: (nut milk of your choice / honey / turmeric / black pepper / cannabis infused coconut oil). It is the best ritual each night making this. Try it for a few weeks and see what happens. It is a super strong remedy, so you may want to start out with small portions and increase. Remember you can always add!

    In terms of what you are using on your skin, only use a very upscale product line such as Purity Woods. Otherwise, use a cannabis / CBD or THC depending infusion of olive, avocado, or coconut oil--this you should make yourself or only buy from the most trusted sources. Rub this cannabis infused oil into your hands and feet before bed at night.

    Of course, any foods that you know cause flareups it's better to avoid and there is nothing like spending an hour or two in the garden each day--sunshine, fresh air, and Dr. Dirt!!!

  • stephanie447stephanie447 Ayurvedic Practitioner Annapolis, MDPosts: 320 ✭✭✭

    Thanks, CBD may be an option but whole cannabis doesn't work for me. First, I don't do mind-altering anything (it attracts negative energies and elementals unless used very carefully in a spiritual context with a Shaman). I also tried marijuana socially in college and it made me super depressed! So THC is not an option.

    I've tried some THC-free CBD oil internally in a capsule format for something else a year or so ago - first few days I was more mellow then got super anxious on it, and it didn't help much. But I may try THC-free CBD oil topically to see what that does for my hands. Thanks for the suggestion!

  • vickeymvickeym Posts: 746 ✭✭✭✭

    aprilbbrinkman Have a question about your "golden green dream milk"...

    My coconut oil stays pretty solid most of the time here in Alaska. How do you infuse it with cannabis when it stays solid?

    I have some cannabis butter a friend gave me. Could that be used?

  • aprilbbrinkmanaprilbbrinkman Posts: 253 ✭✭✭

    @vickeym welcome to the wonderful world of crockpots friend!!! There are many recipes online therein. The cannabis butter you should not infuse again, but I would simply directly bake with it. Of course, you have to decide dosage for yourself and if you are using THC or CBD. Have fun!

  • vickeymvickeym Posts: 746 ✭✭✭✭

    aprilbbrinkman So you basically are making golden milk but adding the cannabis infused coconut oil?

  • stephanie447stephanie447 Ayurvedic Practitioner Annapolis, MDPosts: 320 ✭✭✭

    @aprilbbrinkman I tried some CBD oil on my hands today, seemed to help a little, will see how it goes!

  • annflancanannflancan Posts: 83 ✭✭✭

    Glad to hear you kicked the sugar habit. I too (at 56 yrs.) suffered from arthritis. I took the sensitivity test and removed ALL of the aggravating foods from my diet. Also, like you, I kicked the sugar habit but also cut my carbs to under 20 grams a day and eliminated nuts and dairy. This was the biggest game changer of my life. Not only did I lose unwanted pounds like melting butter, but all joint and back pain was elevated as well. I wish you health in you healing journey.

  • stephanie447stephanie447 Ayurvedic Practitioner Annapolis, MDPosts: 320 ✭✭✭

    So I consulted with an infectious disease specialist I have been working with. He said I had absolutely zero signs of inflammation in my bloodwork so whatever is going on it is not autoimmune or systemic inflammation.

    I did live in Texas for almost 10 years so he ordered Zika and Chikungunya antibodies tests to see if I had been infected in the past. Both of these viruses can cause joint pain and the latter can cause it chronically for years!

    Otherwise, he thinks some of what may be going on with me is possibly a post-viral syndrome.

  • flowerpower *flowerpower * Posts: 245 ✭✭✭

    @annflancan Sugar and grains seem to really cause the fat to accumulate. I was just sick with mild Covid (4-5 days, and three weeks fatigue) and lost about 10 pounds partly because I ditched sugar and most grains. That 10 pounds was coming off of my waistline, I think.

    Arthritis? I have a symptom where my fingers get stuck in a curl when waking, have not seen that for awhile. Sometimes I just drop things, that happens occasionally every few years.

  • aprilbbrinkmanaprilbbrinkman Posts: 253 ✭✭✭

    @stephanie447 great! The foods really do define us both inside and out. Garlic I've also found is amazing to eat, I've cooked it with broccoli and felt immediate relief from inflammation. Also as you already know, sugar should be extremely limited and I'm now banning it outside of the holiday baking sprees...Lemon or lime water also awesome.

  • stephanie447stephanie447 Ayurvedic Practitioner Annapolis, MDPosts: 320 ✭✭✭

    So I met with my integrative doctor this morning and he thinks I might have carpal tunnel syndrome and/or may be clenching my fists at night. He told me to talk to my neurologist about it (which my PCP also told me to do) so now it's back to the neurologist!

    The good news is that I don't have any joint damage or massive inflammation going on!

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