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Arthritis hand pain typically can be relieved with the use of anti-inflammatory medications or pain relieving injections. There are also natural home remedies that could be effective for the temporary relief of arthritis hand pain, including heat, ice, and various herbal tea concoctions. When pain is severe and non-responsive to other types of treatment, a doctor might recommend wearing a splint on the hand. If all options for pain relief have failed, surgery may ultimately be necessary.
The anti-inflammatory drugs a doctor will usually recommend for the relief of arthritis hand pain include acetaminophen and ibuprofen. He may also prescribe stronger medicines containing these ingredients for people with severe arthritis pain. If these medicines fail to provide relief, the next option is typically injections. Most injections contain a long-lasting anesthetic that may provide relief for a few days. Injections containing steroids can provide pain relief for a few months, but doctors normally only use these for people with very severe arthritis pain.
Some people report relief from all types of arthritis pain with the use of natural home remedies. Using heat to relieve arthritis pain is very popular and often inexpensive. Types of heating methods for arthritis hand pain include heating pads, electric blankets, and soaks in very warm or hot water. In addition, ice packs placed on the most painful area may work as well as heat. Ice packs may not be a good solution for people who have poor circulation, however, because the cold temperature could worsen their condition.
Two cups of alfalfa tea every day may temporarily relieve pain related to arthritis as well. Drinking a mixture of two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar and two teaspoons of honey in warm water every day could also provide short-term relief for some people. Arthritis pain often flares up during times of great stress, so it may be beneficial for a person with arthritis pain to find ways to keep things calm in their every day lives. Obesity also tends to worsen arthritis pain due to increased pressure on the joints; weight loss may help alleviate arthritis pain in this case.
In addition to both natural and doctor prescribed remedies for arthritis hand pain, the use of a splint might also be helpful. These splints are worn to prevent people with arthritis from using the affected part of the body any more than they have to. In most cases, these splints are only worn when arthritis pain is particularly bad. People who receive no benefit from any type of arthritis remedy may require surgery, which could include joint replacement or joint fusion. Recovery time for most types of arthritis surgery does not typically exceed three months.