As we covered in the previous section, there are many causes for joint pain. Just like there are so many reasons why we experience joint pain, there are also many ways to go about treating it. For one, there are a slew of medications for joint pain out there that you can take as arthritis remedies. While medications can do the trick, a more direct remedy for arthritis pain relief is to use a topical agent. Guided Nutrients offers a proven solution for topical joint pain relief that we recommend all of our users but we want you to be informed in roder to make a decision yourself. Going straight to the source, using topical agents for joint pain is an efficient way of handling discomfort. Let’s take a look at some of the most effective topical agents for joint pain.
Why Use Topical Agents for Joint Pain?
Arthritis is on the rise. In fact, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) predicts that by 2040, approximately 78 million people will suffer from the condition. That means a lot of people are going to be looking for the best arthritis pain relief. In a society already plagued with an opioid epidemic, many people are looking for safer home remedies for joint pain. A simple and effective solution is using a topical agent.
Unlike painkillers, topical agents can’t be habit-forming. There’s nothing to be addicted to in them. You can safely use topical agents as a form of therapy without running the risk of becoming physically dependent on it.
Not to mention, using a topical agent is more efficient. When you are feeling joint pain, you have no question where the inflammations lie. It’s where the pain is! Applying a topical agent directly to the area allows the medicine to permeate through layers of skin barrier and bring joint pain relief. Using a topical agent comes with almost instantaneous results.
On the opposite end, swallowing a pill as your arthritis treatment will take time to alleviate bone and joint pain. That’s because this form of medication needs to travel all the way down to your gut. From there, the acids need to digest the painkiller and disperse the chemicals into the bloodstream. Finally, the compounds must seek out where the inflammations are. Then they can get to work.
If you think that sounds like a huge work-around, that’s because it is! Using a topical agent for arthritis pain relief instead of medications is like cutting out the middleman. You are getting to the source of the issue directly, thereby handling the joint pain in a more prompt manner. Now that you know why topical agents are such a popular choice for arthritis remedies, let’s take a look at the best topical agents for joint pain.
Types of Topical Agents for Joint Pain
Whether you are buying a balm, patch, or ointment, topical agents are divided into four distinct categories. They are broken down to better target the specific needs of your particular arthritis treatment.
These four categories are:
This might all sound a bit overwhelming at first, but don’t worry. We will thoroughly go over what each category of joint pain relief means.
The way that topical capsaicin products works is by targeting pain signals. These particular topical agents are derived from chili peppers. That’s why when you apply them, you ought to feel quite a bit of heat.
When this heat comes in contact with nerve endings on the flip side of your epidermis, it reduces the levels of substance P in your system. Naturally, nerve endings secrete substance P. As Substance P enters the bloodstream, the compound tends to bind onto pain receptors, causing joint pain sensations.
Popular brand name capsaicin topical agents for arthritis pain relief include:
Due to the heat sensations caused by capsaicin-based products, be sure to test a small patch of skin first. Avoid touching your mouth and eyes. Also, thoroughly wash your hands after use.
As the name suggests, counterirritants…counter irritants. The job of this arthritis treatment is to distract your nerve endings from the pain you are feeling. In essence, counterirritants don’t treat the actual joint pain, they change how the body perceives the arthritis pain.
When counterirritants come into contact with skin, they send it into shock by applying a burst of hot or cold sensations. Seeing as your brain was so focused on the pain sensations, the mind get deviated from its pain game when a wrench like hot or cold sensations is thrown into the mix. Therefore, it stops paying attention to the joint pain bringing arthritis pain relief and focuses on the odd hot or cold tingling.
Active ingredients in counterirritants may include:
With these types of ingredients, you can actually make your own topical agent for joint pain at home with essential oils. Take any of the organic, therapeutic-grade aforementioned oils and mix a few drops with a thicker base like coconut oil or avocado oil. Then rub directly onto the area where you are experiencing joint pain.
If you do decide to make your own essential oil arthritis remedies at home, try not to get the oils directly on your skin. It is important they are mixed with a thicker oil before applying to your body. If you don’t want to make a natural arthritis treatment at home, you can get plenty of counterirritants for joint pain relief over the counter.
Some of the most popular counterirritant brands for arthritis pain relief include:
- Icy Hot
- Mineral Ice
- Tiger Balm
- Vicks Vapor Rub
While these are great for treating mild pain, they are not highly recommended for severe pain. Additionally, counterirritants have a strong odor. Other than that, there are no other side effects.
This topical agent is a local anaesthetic that works as a numbing agent. Because it brings numbness to the area applied, using lidocaine for arthritis relief disrupts pain signals to the brain.
While lidocaine is popular for arthritis treatment, it has many uses. In fact, it is effective in treating sunburns, rashes, and hemorrhoids as well. Due to it’s numbing abilities, lidocaine is versatile and can be used in unison with many other ingredients to formulate pain medicines. That’s why it’s used in many popular products on the shelf today.
Popular brand names containing lidocaine for joint pain relief include:
- Aspercreme (Some Formulas)
When using lidocaine, be mindful of the instructions. Absorbing too much of this numbing agent can cause severe side effects, including an irregular heartbeat.
Last but not least of the foursome, many people use medications containing salicylates for arthritis pain relief. These sorts of products are known to have mild anti-inflammatory effects on the body. Derived naturally from plants, salicylates is a chemical compound commonly found in Aspirin.
Much like Aspirin, salicylates only provide temporary relief to acute pain. If you are looking to up the joint pain relief, salicylates may be paired with counterirritants. To save yourself some time and effort, some brands actually have the two together in one formula such as Bengay Ultra Strength Cream.
Popular brands names that use salicylates as the main active ingredient in their formula for an arthritis treatment include:=
- Aspercreme (Some Formulas)
If you are sensitive to Aspirin or take any medications, please contact a physician before using salicylates for your arthritis pain relief.
While this does not fall under one of the four categories outlined above, CBD oil is becoming a popular alternative in natural pain relief for arthritis. CBD oil does not contain THC, which is the psychoactive component of marijuana.
Instead, CBD oil is strictly cannabidiol, a cannabinoid compound. Cannabinoids interact with receptors in our endocannabinoid system. This is the area that governs our central nervous system. The endocannabinoid system is in charge of everything from appetite to hormone production to pain sensations.
When CBD stimulates the cannabinoid receptors, they give off a sedative message to the brain. This in turn makes the brain ignore pain receptors. Therefore, you no longer feel joint pain.
What makes CBD oil even more effective as an arthritis treatment is that our skin has its own endocannabinoid system. That means there are cannabinoid receptors near our nerve endings. Therefore, CBD oil has instantaneous relief that perhaps other topical agents for joint pain don’t have.
Now, let’s take a look at injections for joint pain.