29 May 2020

Did You Know? Knee osteoarthritis is one of the world’s most common joint diseases and the number one cause of pain and disability in the elderly.

Arthritis is a common companion for the aged and elderly. Sometimes, it can be stiffness, or a dull and grinding ache. At other times, the A-monster manifests itself in the form of a throbbing or burning sensation. And during cold rainy weather, the pain becomes so excruciating to the point you feel like amputating your limbs. 

Frayed Ends Of Mobility

There are two types of arthritis, inflammatory (rheumatoid arthritis) or mechanical (osteoarthritis). While its common in the elderly, young people may suffer from this due to trauma or injury suffered before. As the joint cartilage gets worn out, the bone surface becomes exposed at the joints, which explains the crunching or grinding sound during any attempted movement. Apart from the pain, the affected joint may become swollen, and range of motion affected.  Whether its rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, or any other joint pain that typically occurs at the hips, knees, hands, wrist and feet, the pain can be debilitating when it strikes.

Tackling Joint Pain with TCM

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) theory, qi (vital energy) and blood flow along pathways that connect the whole body to nourish the body and support various functional activities of the body. Joint pain symptoms are due to the localized stagnation of qi and blood. Another issue may arise from qi and blood deficiency, which occurs with age. An invasion of external pathogenic factors such as wind, cold and dampness may also trigger joint pain.

Through modalities such as acupuncture and acupressure (tui na), the circulation of qi and blood in the body can be restored.  

Acupuncture & Acupressure

By inserting fine needles into various acupoints in the body, acupuncture can free stagnated qi and blood to restore circulation, especially at the target joint regions. Acupressure massage (tui na) works on the same principles, with a practitioner using his hands instead of needles. Both treatments also trigger the release of endorphins, which enable a relaxing feeling after treatment. 

Herbal Prescriptions

Apart from acupuncture and acupressure, you may consume herbal medicine and supplements to alleviate joint pain symptoms. For example, the benefits of collagen supplement have been well documented towards improving weight loss and boosting overall joint health. Through a TCM diagnostic, your TCM physician can better understand your condition and prescribe the right set of herbs in that form of a concoction or formula that will aid in alleviating joint pain symptoms. 

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