Supplements For Joint Pain

Joint pain is a broad term and can be a result from different kinds of conditions or injuries. Other name for joint pain is Arthralgia. It is actually a symptom of certain infections, an allergic reaction to some medications that you take, injury or diseases specifically arthritis.

Joint pain or Arthralgia term should only apply to conditions that are non-inflammatory and for conditions that are inflammatory the term Arthritis should be applied according to MeSH (Medical Subject Headings).

What Causes Joint Pain? Causes can range from autoimmune diseases, infectious diseases to injury. It can be a result from autoimmune diseases like Rheumatoid arthritis which causes pain and stiffness in the joints. Other autoimmune diseases like Osteoarthritis, Gout, Bursitis and Chondromalacia patellae.

It can be a result too of infectious diseases like Varicella or commonly known as Chickenpox, Rubella or German Measles, Rheumatic Fever, Parvovirus, Mumps, Measles, Lyme Disease, Influenza, Hepatitis and Epstein-Barr Viral syndrome.

And of course last but not the least it can be a result from some injury which resulted to fracture, strains or sprains, Tendonitis, Septic Arthritis, Osteomylitis and Osteoarthritis.

Joint pain remedy or treatment depends on what cause your joint pain. For non-inflammatory or non-arthritis joint pain, rest and exercise is the most important in treating such pain. Stretching should be done regularly as well as massage and warm baths.

For inflammatory joint pain, anti-inflammatory medications may aid in reducing the swelling as well as the pain. Consult your health care provider before taking any NSAID’s especially if you are giving it to children.

There are plenty of supplements for joint pain available in the market today but you have to take caution in choosing what supplement as well as the brand. Current studies showed that some brand of supplements does not really contain what it said in the label, most of them come short. That is why Arthritis Foundation recommends to buyers to choose only the most trusted and of good reputation brand. Do not go for cheaper ones for it is most likely an imitation.

The top choices for joint pain supplements are Glucosamine, Chondroitin, Methylsulfonylmethane and a combination of the above supplements mentioned. It is Glucosamine and Chondroitin which is becoming popular today. These two supplements are said to relieve joint pains and reduce the chances of osteoarthritis. They both are believed to prelude collapse of joint cartilage and even encourage creation of new cartilage. It is no wonder that sales of such product have reach a billion already in the United States alone.

But are the two supplements really effective? What does the research says about this? Well there are actually good and bad news about the research results made of these two compounds. For the good news – there are quite a number of studies done for this subject. In fact about eighteen clinical studies have been done already involving more than 3000 individuals has been done for Glucosamine and there has been eight studies done which involves more than 800 individuals for Chondroitin and all have been published.

The result? It has been found out that chondroitin or glucosamine is any better than placebo in relieving joint pain discomfort. No strong evidence either that these two compounds is much better than NSAIDs in relieving pain although one thing that is an advantage with these two compounds is that it has lesser toxicity than NSAIDs medication thus less side effects to the body.

For the bad news – These two compounds are sold together yet no clinical studies could support where these two compounds are administered together. So it is found out that glucosamine and chondroitin has slow effect thus does not bring immediate relief from pain unlike with the NSAID’s. Although the two compounds have a longer lasting effect since some studies showed that effects of the two compounds last for up to four weeks even after an individual stops taking it (from Rheumatic Disease Clinics of North America. 2000;26(1):1-11)

In addition, no clinical studies have shown any effect of the two compounds with regards to the breakdown of cartilage cells. With these results one cannot really tell if glucosamine and chondroitin is really effective.