Rheumatologist in Encinitas, CA discusses effective natural remedies for rheumatic diseases
Rheumatic diseases can be painful and debilitating conditions that can have negative impacts that go well beyond painful joints. They can interfere with your social, home, and work life and cause emotional distress. That’s why Dr. Peter Lloyd at Seaside Rheumatology in Encinitas, CA has devoted his career to helping patients with rheumatic conditions regain their quality of life. Dr. Lloyd takes a whole-body approach that consists of both natural remedies and traditional medicine when developing treatment plans with his patients. Below, we explain several of the complementary medicine therapies that can benefit patients with rheumatic diseases.
Do natural remedies really work?
For most patients, yes! The phrase “natural remedies” (or “complementary medicine”) consists of a wide variety of options for easing your symptoms and managing your rheumatic disease, from lifestyle changes to supplements and physical therapy. At Seaside Rheumatology, we have seen the dramatic difference that natural therapies and lifestyle changes can make on patients’ rheumatic conditions, and firmly believe in a well-rounded treatment approach that utilizes both complementary medicine and traditional medical therapies.
The link between diet and some rheumatic diseases – in particular, gout – is clear. Certain foods such as alcohol and animal protein cause high levels of uric acid to build up in the body, which can in turn cause painful flare-ups of gout. In other rheumatic conditions, dietary changes can be used to reduce inflammation in not only your digestive system, but the rest of your body due to the elimination of certain foods that trigger inflammatory pathways. Dr. Lloyd can help you determine whether there are any aspects of your diet that may be contributing to your symptoms and how to eat nutritiously to boost your body’s natural healing abilities.
There are many natural supplements that can be used to enhance the health of your joints, immune system, digestive system, and other aspects of your body to help reduce your symptoms and flare-ups. Common supplements for patients with rheumatic disease include, among others:
- Turmeric, a powerful anti-inflammatory spice that has been used as a natural medicine for centuries
- Thunder god vine, a root that was shown in a large study to improve rheumatoid arthritis symptoms better than traditional drug sulfasalazine
- Omega-3 supplements for anti-inflammatory effects
- Borage, evening primrose, or black currant oils to ease inflammation and stiffness in the joints
It is important to work closely with Dr. Lloyd to determine which supplements are appropriate for your individual medical condition, however. While natural supplements typically have fewer side effects than traditional medications, some can have unintended side effects in people with certain conditions or can interact with other medications that you are taking.
Acupuncture is an ancient form of natural medicine that has been used to treat pain for many centuries. With super-fine needles, acupuncture practitioners stimulate the energy in your body along natural pathways that are called “meridians.” Studies have shown that acupuncture can help with chronic pain and lower the chemicals in your body that lead to inflammation.
Yoga and Tai Chi
These gentle movement exercises can not only help with easing pain and inflammation in your joints, but also boost your health by building strength, balance, and flexibility. These strategies can also be incredibly effective at reducing stress, especially when combined with meditation or breathing exercises.
Massage, physical therapy, or manual therapy
Various therapies that involve manual manipulation of your muscles and joints, such as massage, physical therapy, and manual therapy, can all be used to ease pain, loosen your joints, and eliminate the buildup of toxins in your body. Dr. Lloyd can provide you with recommendations about excellent practitioners in the Encinitas, CA area that you can work with to help relieve your symptoms.
Your partners in health
At Seaside Rheumatology, managing your symptoms so you can live comfortably and pain-free is one of our top priorities. Dr. Peter Lloyd and our entire team of professionals are here to help you develop a full treatment plan customized for your specific needs that consists of either natural or traditional medical therapies, or both, to minimize side effects and prioritize your health. If you are in the area of Encinitas, CA, call us today at 760-509-2429 to learn more about your treatment options for rheumatic diseases.