We know how chronic diseases, like rheumatoid arthritis, work. It recurs and gets worse over time. We know little about how we can rid the pain except with painkillers. Regardless, many patients with this chronic disease cannot escape the pain and the debilitating effects it has on them.
Rheumatoid arthritis is a type of autoimmune disease and affects millions of Americans. Standard medication drugs dampen the immune process, while newer medicines target specific immune cells, both to lessen the inflammation. The latter is more effective; however, like medicines that target the immune system, it is not a cure.
Functional, Restorative Medicine
That’s where functional medicine can help patients. Its aim is to provide restorative treatments. It helps to promote the body’s natural healing ability with proper nutrition, physical activity and medication when necessary.
If a patient exhibits allergy symptoms and poor digestion, two symptoms common in rheumatoid arthritis patients, the patient’s care will include the goals of lessening these symptoms. Food allergens will be removed from the diet and replaced with food rich in fiber. The patient will also need to take supplementary medicine that aids in helping the digestive system to produce hydrochloric acid for proper digestion.
Physical therapy is also a key approach in the functional treatment of rheumatoid arthritis care. It helps the patients to move and also reduces pain. According to the RedRiver Health and Wellness Center, it’s not curative, but it does lessen the side effects some patients may experience.
During the first stage of the treatment, the patient may still need to take the prescribed medicine. Functional medicine practitioners will still refer to the diagnosis, and use the test results and previous treatments to decide on how to proceed to help the patient. For each patient, the treatment becomes a personal approach to healing and recuperation.
Functional medicine in rheumatoid arthritis care makes doctors and patients look closer into the disease and the patient’s lifestyle, in order to find a treatment designed to fit the patient’s medical history. In functional medicine, both doctors and patients are responsible for creating a treatment that is as natural as possible.