Arthritis is painful, restricting and difficult to treat. Chinese medicinal treatments for arthritis can be a godsend in that they are often far more effective than Western medicine.
Arthritis is a very painful and very common affliction that results from inflammation of the joints. It is one of the most common ailments in people over the age of 65. There are various forms of arthritis and also various causes. In some cases, arthritis is the result of prior injury to the joint, but it is also thought to be just the natural result of aging. Pain is perhaps the most significant problem and indicator of arthritis, but reduced range of motion is also a frequent symptom.
Chinese Tradition Medicine views arthritis as a blockage syndrome. As is usually the case in Chinese medicine, the condition is not accepted as a natural state of affairs in the human body even in older people. Rather, it is seen as a blockage of the smooth flow of Qi and blood through the energetic Pathways of the Meridians of the body. It is also viewed as being the result of environmental conditions. The Pathogenic influences of wind, cold, and dampness break through the natural defenses of the body and lodge themselves in the muscles, tendons, and joints.
The concept of Painful Obstruction syndrome where these foreign elements are creating Qi blockage are the basis for treatment of arthritis. While acupuncture is commonly used to treat and relieve pain, herbal treatments are indicated for the long term treatment and prevention of arthritis. There are a wide variety of herbs that have been used or are indicated in the relief of arthritis. They include ginger, Chinese Thunder God vine, willow bark extract, feverfew, cat’s claw, and stinging nettle.
Recently, studies have been done on an herbal extract known as Tripterygium Wilfordi Hook F (TWHF) that has proved beneficial in the treatment of severe Rheumatoid Arthritis. The reports claim that it is very comparable to prednisone, a common chemical medication used in the treatment of arthritis. As in the cases of other herbal treatments and alternative medicine solutions in general, there is some controversy over the use of herbal medicines in the treatment of arthritis. The major complaint seems to be over the lack of regulation and uncertainty about the side effects of some of the herbal preparations.
The Chinese herbal medicine approach to treatment has been tested in the laboratory of human experience over a period of five thousand years. When it is combined with other treatments such as acupuncture and proper regulation of diet and exercise, there is no question that it has proven effective in the treatment of arthritis and the relief of the pain and lack of mobility associated with it.
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