Wondering How to Treat Swollen Joints? Try These Methods

young woman with swollen joint pain in the knee

Millions of adults suffer from swollen joints every year. Joints are where your bones meet and allow the skeleton to move. Some of the most common joints where people experience swelling are knees, elbows, hips, and shoulders. The most common method for how to treat swollen joints is through home remedies. First, however, let’s take a look at what causes swollen joint pain.

What Causes Joint Pain?

There are a plethora of conditions that lead to swollen joint pain. It’s so common that almost one-third of adults report experiencing swollen joints within the past 30 days. Swollen joints are the result of an increase in fluid surrounding them. This can be a result of a physical injury such as muscle strain or common illnesses such as arthritis.

While knees, hip, and shoulder pain are some of the most common afflictions, swollen joints can affect any part of your body from your ankles to your hands. Symptoms of swollen joints can last from a few weeks (considered acute swollen joint pain) to being chronic and can include things like swelling, redness, and tenderness to touch.

How to Treat Swollen Joints

Learning how to treat swollen joints includes fighting bodily inflammation, reducing pain levels, and restoring full function. Swollen joint pain treatments can include:

  • Losing Weight
  • Heat and Cold Therapy
  • PRICE Method of Home Care
  • Mindfulness Meditation

We’re taking a look at multiple methods for how to treat swollen joints so you can learn what works best for you. If you’re wondering how to treat swollen joints, try these methods!

Lose Weight to Reduce Excess Joint Pressure

If you are overweight, losing weight can relieve some of the pressure on your painful joints. Stick with low-impact exercises that won't further irritate the joint.

Losing weight tops our list on how to treat swollen joints. If you’re overweight, shedding some pounds can help alleviate some of the excess pressure on your joints, reducing the likelihood of swelling and pain. Weight loss can also help reduce blood pressure, relieve lower back pain and sciatica symptoms, and fight sleep apnea issues.

If you decide to exercise to lose weight, consider sticking to some lower-impact activities like yoga and tai-chi or exercises that you can do without overexerting yourself. Post-workout self care such as integrating a zero gravity recliner with your daily fitness routine is also essential to recovering quickly and staying healthy. 

Alternating Heat and Cold Therapy to Treat Swollen Joints

Heat and cold therapy are both effective ways for how to treat swollen joints. Applying cold can help reduce inflammation and reduce pain from swollen joints after being active. The cold stimulates sensory receptors in the skin, lowering the amount of pain signals sent to your brain. A cold compress can also help slow the production of joint fluid. Never apply ice packs or any cold compress directly to the skin. Always wrap them in a towel or other covering and limit your application to 15 to 20 minutes at a time.

Heat therapy is another method for how to treat swollen joints that works very effectively. Heat therapy is especially helpful before physical activity to loosen the muscles and joints, alleviating stiffness. Heating pads can help but better methods for improving your joint pain include using equipment like a zero gravity recliner which heats your body more evenly and efficiently. Heat therapy sessions are just one of the activities to do while relaxing in your zero gravity chair that will protect your physical and mental health.

PRICE Method of Home Care for Swollen Joints

The PRICE method of home care is a very inclusive way for how to treat swollen joints. The acronym itself stands for:

  • Protect 
  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Compress
  • Elevate

First, you protect your swollen joints with a brace or a wrap. Next in line comes resting your joints. The idea here is to initially avoid activities that cause pain, which could make joints more swollen and inflamed. While resting, ice the joint using our guide to cold therapy above. The swollen joints should then be compressed with an elastic wrap and finally elevated above the heart level.

Having a good setup to perform the PRICE method is essential to your care. A couch or traditional recliner won’t elevate the joint high enough to be as effective or comfortable. Using a zero gravity chair allows you to follow the PRICE method from beginning to end extremely efficiently.

A zero gravity massage chair can add an additional healing element to the heat therapy functions and make your recovery even faster! Furthermore, the zero gravity position, designed by NASA, elevates your legs above your heart level and helps reduce inflammation throughout your entire body. This position also reduces pressure from your hip region and facilitates spinal decompression, lessening pain from swollen joints as well as alleviating lower back pain and sciatica symptoms with spinal decompression.

Reduce Joint Swelling Through Meditation

Last, but not least, on our list of how to treat swollen joints is mindfulness meditation. Meditation helps your mental and physical health by centering your mind and increasing self-awareness. It helps lower blood pressure, manage stress levels, and release endorphins that alleviate pain signals. In one study, mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) was shown to lessen pain, morning stiffness, and swollen joints. The participants reported these changes almost immediately and up to 6 months later.

Swollen joints can disrupt your life and keep you from being as active as you want to be. We’ve explored multiple ways to treat swollen joints and get you back to feeling great. Proper self care is essential to the healing process. Choose a zero gravity chair with options to meet your needs and you’ll have a beautiful addition that adds comfort, healing, and style to your home.

We know that relaxing in a zero gravity recliner boosts your mental and physical health. Read these tips for how to prevent pain from sitting too long