What Can Help With Psoriatic Arthritis?

What Can Help With Psoriatic Arthritis?
What Can Help With Psoriatic Arthritis?

Relief Starts Here

Psoriatic arthritis (PA) is an autoimmune disease in which patients develop painful joint swelling and stiffness. Living with psoriatic arthritis can be challenging. Not only does it often start off as a bothersome skin condition (psoriasis) it generally progresses into a debilitating disease that affects the quality of life. There are different types of psoriatic arthritis, so it’s important to know how to treat it properly. From joint replacement and physical therapy to homeopathic solutions, treatment plans are as varied at the patients. Learn more about what treatment options might be best for you.

Physician Consult

It’s best to initially consult with a doctor about your psoriatic arthritis and overall health. This is a good starting point to see what’s the best recommendation for treatment. Your medical team will base treatment options off your type of psoriatic arthritis. These are:

  • Symmetric polyarthritis — Targets joints on each side of the body
  • Spondylitis — Mainly causes inflammation in the spine, leading to pain and impaired mobility
  • Arthritis Mutilans — Leads to joint damage in the hands and feet
  • Distal Interphalangeal Predominant — Affects joints in the fingers and toes
  • Asymmetric Psoriatic Arthritis — One side is affected, while the other side of the body is not

Patients may have a single diagnosis or have a variety of types. The main goal is to find relief through the right combination of medications and proper treatment.

Joint Replacement and Other Surgical Options

Since psoriatic arthritis affects joints, over time the inflammation can lead to significant erosive damage. With PA, cartilage is also damaged. The result is bone grinding on bone. This is where a partial or total joint replacement may be recommended. Another option is a synovectomy, where the joint lining is removed to help with pain.
A joint fusion is another procedure that helps alleviate pain and improve quality of life. Here, doctors will “weld” the two bones of a joint together so there is no movement to cause friction and pain. The outcome of any surgical technique is to relieve pain and induce better movement.

Physical Therapy

With PA, patients feel limited in their movement because they can’t get around freely due to stiffness and pain. Physical therapy (PT) can help improve range of motion by utilizing repetitive movement and stretching techniques to help blood flow and boost muscle mass. By strengthening the muscles surrounding the affected area you take stress and workload away from the joint itself. Sometimes aquatic and massage therapy is used in conjunction with PT for maximum results.

Homeopathic and Natural Solutions

Medications, surgeries and therapy are viable treatment options, but exploring more natural ways to cope with symptoms is something many patients seek out.

  • Turmeric — Has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties
  • Dead Sea Salts — Reportedly helps with scaling associated with psoriasis and can help relax swollen muscles from PA
  • Mahonia — May help boost the body’s immune response
  • Hot and Cold Compress — Alternate between hold and cold therapy to reduce swelling and combat pain

Many of these solutions can help with the pain, swelling and other side effects associated with psoriatic arthritis. Keep in mind they are not FDA approved and you should talk with your doctor before implementing any homeopathic treatment into your routine.
Psoriatic arthritis can make patients feel like they have barriers and limitations in several facets of everyday life. There is hope. Exploring all treatment options is the first step in finding exactly what works for you.
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