Do you ever experience extreme pain around your joints? One of the causes might be from a medical condition called Bursitis. Many think that you need to be an athlete or extreme sports enthusiast to develop this painful inflammation. But in fact any overuse of the joints, whether at work or during leisure time, can cause bursitis. The good news is there are ways to recover without prescription medications. Treating your injury gently may actually be the most effective way to get better fast.
How You Get Bursitis
Not everyone is familiar with the name, but bursitis is a relatively common condition. In the body, small fluid-filled sacs called bursae provide lubrication and cushioning for the joints, bones, tendons and muscles. Bursae reduce friction, stress and irritation caused by movement. When one or more bursa become inflamed or damaged, the resulting condition is known as bursitis.
Although bursitis may be caused by one singular injury, it is most often due to repetitive, often small movements. You may not feel as if you’re straining your body, but over time, the slight irritation and soreness caused by certain motions can damage the bursae. Your age also plays a role, as tendons and muscles can weaken as you grow older. Common activities I’ve seen lead to bursitis are gardening, raking, shoveling and painting, as well as sports like tennis, golf and skiing.
Natural Joint Soothers
In many cases, bursitis may be treated at home. However, if your pain is disabling, lasts longer than two weeks, causes excessive swelling, bruising or redness, or is accompanied by a fever, see your doctor as soon as possible. If you are at higher risk for infection or something just doesn’t feel right, you shouldn’t hesitate to consult your doctor right away. The first step in healing at home should be to rest the injured area. Cease any activity that causes pain and take it easy for several days to give yourself an opportunity to heal.
As you’ll remember, inflammation causes bursitis, so reducing inflammation is the key to recovery. Certain foods have powerful anti-inflammatory properties and virtually zero chance of side effects. Pineapple contains an enzyme called bromelain that studies show reduces inflammation in injuries like bursitis. Green barley, a grain found in health food stores, is another anti-inflammatory agent you can add to any meal. Finally, turmeric is a spice that has long been associated with reducing inflammation. In fact, some studies showed that it may be as effective as cortisone.
Other natural joint-nourishing ingredients can be found conveniently in supplement form. Omega-3 fatty acids are one of the most popular and powerful natural inflammation fighters. MSM is a form of sulfur that can make cell walls more flexible, strengthening your joints. Your body can heal more quickly with the help of glucosamine, which boosts collagen production. Finally, boswellia, the Indian herb popular in ayurvedic medicine, fights inflammation to promote joint flexibility.
Even natural juices can help you heal faster. Drinking your morning glass of O.J. provides enough vitamin C to yield big benefits. Research shows that deficiency of this vitamin may slow formation and repair of bursae. Black cherry juice (either fresh or from concentrate) is another home remedy for conditions like arthritis, tendonitis and bursitis. Both juices are full of antioxidants to promote healthy cells.
Bursitis pain and swelling may also be treated with ice packs until redness subsides. Then, applying heat may promote healing. If you experience discomfort or heavy swelling, many doctors also recommend NSAIDs, like ibuprofen and aspirin. Whatever options you choose to treat bursitis, don’t be discouraged. The condition is temporary and with the proper gentle care, you should feel healthy and pain-free in no time.