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Natural Remedies for Arthritis Pain Relief

Anyone with arthritis knows what it's like to be in constant
pain and not even have the strength or energy required to
accomplish some of the most basic daily tasks, such as removing
the lid from a jar.

Arthritis -- in any of its 100+ variations -- is a truly
debilitating illness, affecting in excess of 40 million Americans
(almost 1 in 5 adults) and many more millions worldwide. And,
despite beliefs to the contrary, arthritis is not an illness
restricted to the elderly -- anyone, children and animals
included, can become an arthritis sufferer at any time.

It's well known that no medical cure currently exists for
arthritis. It's a chronic, degenerative illness that, once
contracted, stays with the sufferer for life. Not a very
comforting thought. It's not even clear what triggers arthritis
in most cases, although there can be hereditary links.

Regular medicine provides a number of drugs to treat arthritis,
if only in terms of pain management rather than reversal of the
condition. As mentioned, arthritis is a chronic, degenerative
condition that cannot, at the present time, be reversed.

Available drugs -- COX-2 inhibitors and NSAIDs (non-steroidal
anti-inflammatory drugs) -- are proven to be effective in most
cases but they can only help control the pain....and they come at
a cost.

Firstly, there is the monetary cost which can run to hundreds of
dollars per month -- insurance will, no doubt, cover the cost for
many people but for how long?

Secondly, and of far more concern, is the potential cost to the
patient's long-term health from potential addiction and reported
side effects, the most serious of which can include severe
toxicity of the kidneys, liver and bone marrow. There has even
been a case in recent years of one arthritis-treating drug being
withdrawn from the market by its manufacturer due to increased
risk of heart failure and strokes -- this is very worrying! Lots
of information about this can be found on a number of health news
websites - just type Vioxx into a search engine.

Against this background it's no surprise that more and more
people are looking to alternative treatments for their arthritic
condition. And it's why the natural remedies for arthritis pain
relief have such high perceived value; anything that can reduce
pain and at the same time help increase strength and energy with
few or no side effects must surely be worth trying out, right?

There are a number of readily available dietary supplements that
have the potential to bring significant pain relief to arthritis
sufferers. Some of these supplements such as glucosamine sulfate
and chondroitin sulfate are very well known and have been
extensively studied by the scientific community and there appears
to be very good evidence of efficacy.

Another product, rosehip (Rosa Canina), is a more recent
discovery in terms of arthritic pain relief but scientific
studies -- most notably in Europe -- suggest this is a very
promising, all-natural, pain-relieving supplement which offers a
herbal alternative to the animal and marine extracts used in the
manufacture of glucosamine sulfate and chondroitin sulfate.

Unfortunately, because of the vast sums of money involved in
arthritic pain management there are many false claims made on
behalf of totally ineffective or even fake products that are
promoted as wonder cures for arthritis.

The problem for many people is knowing just what is genuine and
what is fake. There is no simple answer other than to search for
the evidence. This does not mean the testimonials on retailers'
or manufacturers' websites -- after all, these companies have an
interest in presenting their products in the most favorable
light. Of course, where a company can show hundreds of
testimonials for a single product rather than just a handful it
might be a little more meaningful (think of Amazon, for example).

Anyone thinking of taking natural remedies to aid arthritis pain
relief needs first to look for evidence of qualified medical or
scientific studies for those specific products and to see what
conclusions are reached. The scientific researchers will have put
time and rigor into their studies -- not to mention putting their
own reputations on the line.

The message is simple: if you are thinking of using a dietary
supplement -- whether for arthritis pain relief or any other
reason -- don't just rely on what the manufacturers say. Use the
available independent evidence to save yourself time, money and
further anguish.

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