Traditional Chinese treatments also reduce pain and inflammation, but they focus on eliminating the cause of the arthritis and, thus, the disease itself.
Acupuncture: Arthritis responds very well to acupuncture. When combined with moxa, it can relieve pain and reduce inflammation immediately. Some acute cases require only a few treatments. Needles are typically placed into points surrounding the painful area, bringing circulation to the area and helping relieve the stagnation that causes pain and swelling. A more chronic, long-term arthritic condition can take months or even years to resolve. For this reason, it is essential to begin treating this disorder at the earliest stage possible.
Herbal Therapy: Herbal therapy is especially important as part of the treatment of chronic cases. The treatment strategy varies, depending on whether the condition is due to heat or cold, or if there is a deficiency of any vital substances. Herbal remedies in chronic cases of cold and dampness need to nourish the underlying deficiency as well as expel the cold and dampness. The patent formula for this condition is Du Huo Ji Sheng Wan. The most effective formula is one custom-made for the patient's individual constitution and pattern of disharmony.
Exercise: In any type of arthritis, it is important for the person to get regular exercise to warm the body and get the qi and blood flowing through the meridians. Since arthritis is a disorder involving stagnation, movement is an essential part of the healing process.
Diet: If the pattern involves cold and dampness (the most common pattern), the diet should consist mostly of cooked foods with moderate amounts of warming anti-inflammatory spices such as cayenne and ginger. Although coffee is warming, it should be avoided due to its irritating nature.