Natural Remedies for Reducing Joint Discomfort

Natural Remedies for Reducing Joint Discomfort

Joints are the areas where 2 or more bones meet, and are mostly mobile, allowing the bones to move. Joints consist of cartilage, a type of tissue that covers bones’ surface where they meet. Joint pain, especially as you age, is incredibly common, resulting from osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, bursitis, gout, strains, sprains, or other injuries.

Joint discomfort alone can easily be managed with rest and simple stretching. Joint discomfort accompanied by pain, can be treated with the following remedies:

  • Protect the joint with a brace or wrap.
  • Rest the joint, avoiding any activities that cause you pain.
  • Ice the joint for about 15 minutes, several times each day.
  • Compress the joint using an elastic wrap.
  • Elevate the joint above the level of your heart.

Woman with joint pain

Applying ice to your painful joints can decrease the pain and inflammation. For muscle spasms around joints, try using a heating pad or wrap several times a day. Your doctor may recommend that you tape or splint the joint to minimize movement or reduce pain, but avoid keeping the joint still for too long because it can eventually become stiff and lose function.

In the event of excruciating pain, usually, the first line of treatment is pain-relieving medication. However, this is not generally encouraged for prolonged use due to some untoward effects. In this regard, natural remedies can play a crucial role in pain management. This includes the following:

1. Weight management

If you are suffering from arthritis, bursitis, or just recently sustained an injury to your joint, your weight can have a big impact on amplifying your symptoms. Extra weight puts more pressure on your joints, especially your knees, hips, and feet.

Reducing the stress on your joints by losing weight can help:

  • Improve your mobility
  • Decrease pain
  • Prevent future damage to your joints

suffering from knee pain

2. Make exercise a routine

If you have arthritis, exercise can help you:

  • Manage your weight
  • Keep your joints flexible
  • Strengthen the muscles around your joints, providing more support

Starting an exercise program is beneficial, especially one prescribed to you by your doctor. Training with a physiotherapist or personal trainer is also recommended, as it increases your motivation and ensures that you are doing suitable exercises with good form. The goal of the exercise is to strengthen the muscles around the joint, stabilize the joint, and improve your range of motion. Swimming and bicycling are among the best exercises for joint pain or discomfort because both allow you to exercise your joints without undue stress or impact.

Swimming is often recommended for those suffering from joint pain because it offers good conditioning and strengthening without causing stress to your joints. Here are just some of the reasons why:


Buoyancy counteracts gravity, thereby decreasing the weight placed on painful joints and the spine. In fact, when immersed to neck level, buoyancy supports 90 percent of your body’s weight, and in waist-depth water, buoyancy can support 50 percent of your body weight. One of the many advantages of exercising in water is that the diminished weight-bearing stress helps aid strengthen weak muscles and improve balance and confidence.

Hydrostatic Pressure

Water can provide up to 15x more resistance than air. It provides a very safe, accommodating resistance, which means that the harder you push against the water, the more resistance you will get. This drag-resistance can help build muscle strength and endurance throughout your body.


Everybody knows how great it feels to soak in a warm, soothing bath. For someone who suffers from chronic pain, warm water can be incredibly soothing. Colder water tends to cause muscles to tense up. Experts say if people with arthritis spent more time in warm water, they’d be able to move better with less pain.

water aerobics

3. Use hot and cold therapy

Heat and cold treatments can help relieve arthritis pain and inflammation.

Heat treatments can include taking a long, warm shower or bath in the morning to help ease stiffness and using an electric blanket or moist heating pad to reduce discomfort overnight.

Cold treatments can help relieve joint pain, swelling, and inflammation. Wrap a gel ice pack or a bag of frozen vegetables in a towel and apply it to painful joints for quick relief. Never apply ice directly to the skin.

Capsaicin, which comes from chili peppers, is a component of some topical ointments and creams that you can buy over the counter. These products provide warmth that can soothe joint pain.

Applying Ice Gel Pack

4. Use meditation to cope with pain

Meditation and relaxation techniques may help reduce the pain of arthritis by lowering stress and enabling you to cope better. Reducing stress may also help lower inflammation and pain.

Tai Chi and Yoga are some of the best practices that help promote relaxation and good breathing.

5. Get a massage

Massage can provide an overall sense of well-being. It may also help manage joint pain and discomfort.

6. Add turmeric to dishes

Turmeric, the yellow spice common in Indian dishes, contains a chemical called curcumin. It has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Research suggests it may help reduce pain and inflammation, especially pain secondary to arthritis and bursitis.

More research is needed to show how turmeric works but adding a small amount of this mild but tasty spice to your dinner is likely to be a safe option. Turmeric is also available as a dietary supplement.


7. Go Herbal

Many herbal supplements can reduce joint pain, although scientific research hasn’t confirmed that any specific herb or supplement can treat arthritis.

Some of these helpful herbs include:

  • Boswellia
  • Bromelain
  • Devil’s claw
  • Ginkgo
  • Stinging nettle
  • Thunder god vine

8. Joint Supplements

Several nutritional supplements have shown promise for relieving pain, stiffness, and other joint symptoms.  Glucosamine and chondroitinomega-3 fatty acids, SAM-e, and curcumin are just some of the natural products researchers have studied for osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA).Heap of pills

It’s important to note that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) doesn’t regulate supplements and other herbal remedies. This means you can’t be sure of what a product contains or the effect it might have. It’s important to read labels before trying any joint supplements. Also, talk with your doctor about the best joint supplement for your symptoms.

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