Luke Coutinho on Reiters Syndrome - reactive arthritis
Luke Coutinho on Reiters Syndrome - reactive arthritis - and finding a way forward…
Typically, arthritis is a condition when joints become inflamed and painful, and mobility of the joints is reduced. Reactive arthritis (also called Reiters Syndrome) is a type of arthritis that is caused because of an infection in another part pf your body, mostly your intestines, genitals or urinary tract. Reactive arthritis targets your knees and the joints of your ankles and feet. Sometimes, the inflammation also affects your eyes and skin.
CAUSES & RISKS
Reactive arthritis, on its own, is not contagious, but it’s caused by some infections that are contagious and spread through sexual contact. Other infections that can cause reactive arthritis infect the gut. One cause is salmonella, that can come from eating food or handling objects that have the bacteria.
Here are some preliminary factors that increase your risk of reactive arthritis:
— Age: This condition is more prevalent among adults between 20-40.
— Gender: When it comes to food-borne infections, women and men are equally likely to develop reactive arthritis. However, men are more likely than women to develop reactive arthritis in response to sexually transmitted bacteria.
SYMPTOMS OF REACTIVE ARTHRITIS
— Pain and stiffness in joints such as knees, ankles, feet, heels, lower back or buttocks.
— Increased frequency and discomfort/ burning sensation during urination.
— Swollen toes or fingers.
— Reactive arthritis can also affect the skin in a variety of ways, including a rash on your soles and palms, plus painful mouth sores.
REACTIVE ARTHRITIS: THE WAY FORWARD
— Medication Pain management includes intake of antibiotics and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to help relieve pain and inflammation. However, using medications will only help to a certain extent. The key here is to make holistic lifestyle changes in the way you eat and in the way you exercise.
— Bromelain Bromelain, an enzyme derived from pineapple, is known to help reduce inflammation and battle reactive arthritis effectively.
— Turmeric Turmeric contains an active compound called curcumin which is known to have excellent antiinflammatory effects and helps manage Reiters Syndrome.
Using medications will only help to a certain extent. The key here is to make holistic lifestyle changes in the way you eat and in the way you exercise.
— Extra Virgin Olive Oil Apart from having immense benefits when it comes to maintaining cardiovascular health and catalyzing weight loss, EVOO is also excellent at fighting inflammation and managing reactive arthritis. Extra virgin olive oil contains a compound called oleocanthal that helps fight inflammation and reduces joint cartilage damage. Bear in mind, you must choose the extra virgin variant of the oil as the refined ones are mostly devoid of this compound.
— Beetroot Beetroot is a rich source of betalain pigments which have strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. One of these pigments, betaine, helps reduce inflammation and fights reactive arthritis.
— Ginger Ginger is an immune modulator that helps reduce inflammation and manage reactive arthritis. According to ayurveda, ginger is effective at warming the body, which helps it break down the accumulation of toxins in your organs. It’s also known to cleanse the lymphatic system, our body’s sewage system.
— Exercise Regular, moderate exercise goes a long way in improving joint function. Strength training with weights is important because having strong muscles around the joint helps make the joint more stable. It is important to incorporate exercises that increase the joint’s range of motion and flexibility to subsequently reduce the stiffness and pain. Regular exercise also helps individuals maintain healthy body weight, which puts less pressure on the joints.
— Warm & Cool Packs Applying warm packs to the affected joints may help relax the muscles, reduce pain and increase blood flow. Applying cool packs to the affected joints may help reduce swelling and pain caused by arthritis. A cool compress that is applied to the eyes may help alleviate inflammation around the eye area. Cool packs should not be applied for longer than 10 minutes at a time.
— Bed Rest You may benefit from short periods of bed rest. Lying down periodically reduces the pressure put on the joints, and it may help relieve pain and inflammation caused by arthritis.
Bromelain, an enzyme derived from pineapple, is known to help reduce inflammation and battle reactive arthritis effectively.