A joint in the body is where the two bones articulate. There are many types of joints in the body, allowing varying degrees and types of motion. Joints like knees, elbow, shoulders, hip and ankle help us in carrying out our body movements, while joints like the sutures which join the bones of the skull provide very less movement, protecting the brain and the sensory organs. Joint pain refers to the soreness, inflammation and discomfort in the any of the joints.
Joint pain may be caused due to ageing factor or injuries that affect the ligaments, bursae or tendons that make up the joints. Joint pain is also sometimes referred to as arthralgia. They may also be the result of any underlying medical condition or chronic illnesses.
The most common cause of joint pains is arthritis. It is very common above the age of 40. It is a very slow developing disease, and may take upto years before it start showing symptoms which can hinder in day to day activities. The most commonly affected joints are knees, wrists and hips. Arthritis is of two types- osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Osteoarthritis is caused due to breakdown of the cartilage that is present between two bones and protects them from sliding over one another. Osteoarthritis can affect any joint but the most vulnerable ones are the knees, hands, hips and spine.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, in which the body’s own immune system starts attacking the membranes of the joints. This condition may lead to deformities of the joints in course of time.
Other factors which may lead to joint pains are
- Gout- in which inflammation and intense pains are caused due to deposition of uric acid in the small joints.
- Bursitis- which means inflammation of the cushioning pads around joints
- Injury, like sprains
- Ankylosing spondylitis
- Psoriatic arthritis
- Bone tumour, in rare cases
- Some sexually transmitted diseases like chlamydia and gonorrhoea
Sign and symptoms
Mild symptoms may not require any medical intervention and can be relieved to some extent by some dietary and lifestyle changes. Need to see a doctor arises when severe symptoms of the disease start showing up, like-
- the area around the joint is red, inflamed, tender and warm.
- there is continuous pain, which has persisted for more than three days
- there is stiffness and locking up of the joint
- with the inflammation, there is presence of fever also
- limping and weakness of the joint
- After injury, if the symptoms like intense pain, deformity of the joint, sudden swelling and inability of movement is present, one may need to be taken to emergency for immediate medical help.
On visiting the clinic, doctor may perform several physical examinations, to identify the cause and severity of the pain. X- ray of the joint may be advised to asses the amount of damage happened in the joint, to understand the prognosis and medication required.
If the doctor is not able to find out any obvious cause of the pain, he may suggest for some blood examinations to rule out other medical conditions which result into joint pain.
Homeopathy works wonderfully in the cases of joint pain. Homeopathic medicines not only relieve the pain, but go deep inside the tissues to cure the root cause of the disease. There are medicines in homeopathy which can be prescribed on routine basis for preventing the progress of diseases like osteoarthritis. People who are 40+ in age should consult the best homeopathic doctor to start medicines on time to time basis, to prevent or delay the occurrence to such medical conditions.
Women, especially after menopause are at higher risk of developing diseases related to bones. They should also take advice from the best homeopathic doctor as soon as they enter this phase, before it’s too late and permanent damage is caused.
Some commonly prescribed homeopathic medicines in joint pain are bryonia, rhus tox, caulophyllum, ledum pal, sulphur, etc.