A huge inconvenience for women during menopause can be the symptom of joint pain. Joint pain can greatly limit personal mobility and, when suffered in conjunction with other menopause symptoms, can be hugely debilitating. For this reason it is important to identify the causes of joint pain in order to avoid its worst effects. Read over the following paragraphs for more information on the causes of joint pain and its possible treatments.
How is Joint Pain Related to Menopause? What are the Causes?
During menopause women can go through a range of symptoms including joint pain, headaches, burning tongue syndrome and in some cases even heart palpitations. The traditional view links estrogen and fluctuating hormone levels to these symptoms. There are a couple of other factors that tend to exacerbate the symptoms of joint pain. Given that the average age a woman will go through menopause is during her 50s, this is an age bracket that also has a higher likelihood of suffering from osteoarthritis.
Keep it simple:
Osteoarthritis is an inflammation of the joints that causes pain.
Combining osteoarthritis with menopause is a recipe for joint pain, given that falling levels of estrogen (as occurs in menopause) are known to have anti-inflammatory effects in the body and a decreased ability to absorb pain.
How Can I Reduce the Causes of Joint Pain During Menopause?
Of course there are a host of methods available for dealing with joint pain during menopause. Most people experiencing heat or cold are advised to start with heat or cold:
Often an ice pack will bring about some joint pain relief. This can be done by filling plastic bag with ice and loosely wrapping it in a towel, then placing the pack on the joint for 15 minutes.
Heat can also bring joint pain relief. A heating pad or even and old fashioned hot water bottle can often help.
One common medical solution has been to use hormone replacement therapy (HRT). This is where synthetic estrogen is used to try and supplement the diminished levels in the body. Unfortunately however, whilst HRT sometimes proves effective in alleviating other symptoms of menopause, it cannot be used specifically to cure joint pain. Some studies have demonstrated that post-menopausal estrogen can enhance the risk of medical conditions such as osteoarthritis along with headaches, fluid retention, vaginal discharge and weight gain.
In addition to this, sometimes a buckwheat pillow, warmed in the microwave can help to reduce joint pain. Likewise, a 15-minute soak will often relax muscles and also give pain relief.
There are also people who find relief from joint pain through the use of creams that heat up when massaged into the skin. Massaging the joint while applying the cream can help to relieve swelling and the heat also helps with pain relief.
What are Some Additional Treatment Options for Dealing with Joint Pain?
In addition to the various solutions listed above there are also some alternative remedies that help target the estrogen deficiency and hormonal fluctuations responsible for joint pain. These natural medicines come highly recommended, and are particularly effective if combined with a healthy diet and exercise regime in easing symptoms naturally.