Psoriatic arthritis is a serious condition that impacts the joints of those patients who are affected by the skin disease psoriasis. Those with mild psoriasis or have relatives with psoriasis can be affected by this condition. Psoriasis results in itchy, scaly red patches on the skin. People who have psoriasis are at a higher risk of being affected by serious ailments and diseases including, arthritis, depression, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.
One-third of the people who are affected by psoriasis are likely to be affected by psoriatic arthritis. They are likely to feel pain in more than one joints or extremities of fingers and toes. Swelling, redness, and warmth can be seen in the affected joints. Nails undergo changes and some experience pain in the lower back. This is an autoimmune disease, where the body’s immune system mistakenly damages the lining of the joints resulting in inflammation and pain.
Since there is no cure for psoriatic arthritis, medications that include corticosteroids and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), have to be administered for long periods. One cannot completely stop the medication, but symptoms can be managed better with changes in the way one lives, eats and thinks. It is important to consult your doctor before making one or many of these changes in your daily life.
Ways to naturally manage psoriatic arthritis include the following methods:
1. Practice positivity
A positive attitude has resulted in a miraculous turnaround of patients. Patients diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis go through unimaginable pain 24×7. Maintaining a positive attitude and working towards improving symptoms goes a long way in bringing about change.
Resting when the symptoms are not so bad, can help the damaged muscles to relax. Good rest is vital for the natural treatment of psoriatic arthritis.
3. Physical activity
Physical activity helps improve the quality of life for people affected by psoriatic arthritis. They should engage in mild physical activity like a slow walk, low impact aerobic exercises, or light exercises to strengthen muscles and increase flexibility. Running, swimming and cycling too are recommended activities. Maintaining a healthy body is one of the best natural treatments for psoriatic arthritis.
4. Weight management
Obesity is a disadvantage at all for people with psoriatic arthritis. If you have a high BMI, focus on losing weight. People who have a high BMI are also at risk for other illnesses. Weight loss and maintenance are integral for the natural treatments for psoriatic arthritis.
5. Regular doctor checkups
Frequent and regular follow up and physical examinations will help your team of doctors to see the progress regularly
6. Good posture
Maintaining correct posture despite pain can help support the muscles around the weakened joints. This comes with conscious practice.
7. Hot and cold compress
Hot and cold compress as the case may as per the advice of the doctor can relieve severe pain in the joints. Frequent hot showers help relax the stiffened muscles during flare-ups.
Stay active by keeping yourself engaged with an activity that can take your mind away from your disease. Music, art, community or social work, volunteering wherever possible can help you distract your mind. Enroll in support groups. Sharing of experiences, and cures and even new findings in this field can result in more awareness about the condition.
9. Healthy diet
A balanced diet is a lifesaver when it comes to natural treatments for psoriatic arthritis. Eating the right amount of food and the right type of food can help prevent flare-ups. You should be aware of foods that can improve or worsen inflammation and ensure that they are included or avoided as the case may be. Increasing the proportion of plant-based diet and reducing meat is a key component of diet change.
Frequent communication with your caregivers and family members will help them understand patterns of pains and flare-ups. Sharing your pain and thoughts can help them coordinate and plan your treatment better.