Causes of the Creakin

There are a number of different types of arthritis, including

> Osteoarthritis. Average age at onset: over 40. Characteristics: gradual stiffness and pain, enlargement of the joint.

> Rheumatoid arthritis. Average age at onset: 25-50. Characteristics: autoimmune condition (immune system cells kill body cells), inflammation of the joint and neighboring tendons, muscles, and nerves.

> Spondyloarthropathies. Average age at onset: 20-40. Characterisitics: spinal inflammation and pain, often causing postural changes.

> Gout. Average age at onset: 40-43. Characteristics: sudden severe pain and swelling of a large joint, usually the big toe.

> Lupus. Average age at onset: 18-50. Characteristics: fever, weakness, facial and joint pain.

> Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. Average age at onset: under 18. Characteristics: autoimmune

Get the Point

Get right into an "herbal soup" to soothe your aching joints. Place 9-12 grams of cinnamon (Gui Zhi), fresh ginger (Sheng Jiang), dried peach kernel (Tao Ren), and milk vetch root (Huang Qi) in a pot Cover with water, bring to a boil, simmer 10 minutes, and strain off the water. After it has cooled down, place your stiff hands in the container and massage the warm herbal liquid into your joints. You can reboil and use the herbs and water several times.

condition, stiffness (often in the knees, wrists, or hands). May involve kidneys, heart, lungs, and nervous system.

> Infectious arthritis. Average age at onset: any. Characteristics: body aches, chills, fever, low blood pressure, swelling and pain that spread to other joints.

> Kawasaki syndrome. Average age at onset: 6 months to 11 years. Characteristics: fever, joint pain, rash on palms and soles, and heart problems.

Oriental Aids for Arthritis

Arthritis in its many forms is a common condition to be treated by Oriental Medicine. Your acu-pro will determine which environmental factor affects you: wind (moving pain), dampness (localized heavy ache), cold (worse from exposure to cold temperatures), or heat (skin is swollen, inflamed, and hot to the touch). He or she will treat the specific areas of your complaint and help improve your general health to keep you feeling good.

Acupuncture is widely used for arthritis and has served my patients well over the years. There are currently studies being conducted on several sites of arthritis being treated by acupuncture, such as knee osteoarthritis. I use a diverse mix of acupuncture techniques including the traditional needle system and electromagnetic acupuncture. All have their place in a series of treatments when determining which one or combination will give the most relief. Moxibustion is used to warm acu-points and channels, relieving the cold aches, while acupuncture in all its forms moves stuck blood and Qi to increase flexibility and decrease pain.

Acupressure and Tui-Na massage will use firm pressure over tender arthritic nodules and sore ashi points along the muscles and joints. Nodules are the hard, tender lumps you find in muscles and acu-points.

Qi Gong exercises are often taught to patients. The slow, gradual movements and deep breathing help keep joints moving and increase circulation. Food therapy and Chinese herbal medicine are effectively used to nourish your body, treat any underlying problems, and keep you feeling good. Arthritis is one of the conditions that Oriental Medicine has been treating for centuries. See your acu-pro to discover what kind of help is waiting for you.

Feeling better? Little by little, we'll cover many of the health concerns that you have, and you can even pick up some tips for your friends. So far you've gotten some solid solutions to such nagging complaints as tennis elbow, bursitis, carpal tunnel, and arthritis. You've got stretches, acu-points, and herbs to chew on. What's next? Your lower torso awaits to get on the healing path.

The Least You Need to Know

)►■ Acupuncture relieves swollen, painful bursitis.

)►■ Firm acupressure on L1-12, LI-11, or LI-10 can reduce tennis elbow pain. )►■ Electro- or laser acupuncture short-circuits carpal tunnel pain and numbness. )►■ Make an "herbal soup" to wash away your arthritic pain and stiffness.

Chapter 9

Arthritis Joint Pain

Arthritis Joint Pain

Arthritis is a general term which is commonly associated with a number of painful conditions affecting the joints and bones. The term arthritis literally translates to joint inflammation.

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