How Effective is Self-Management When Treating Gout?
Gout is a type of arthritis caused primarily by uric acid build up in the joints. This build up occurs due to the way our body breaks down purine food and what we eat when we are dieting. The kidneys are supposed to break down uric acids but sometimes they are unable to do this effectively. They are also unable to rid the body of excess urates which often ends up in the joints and gout is the result.
Gout is generally caused by an underlying condition called hyperuricemia, where there is usually too much uric acid present in the system. The body usually produces uric acid naturally when it breaks down certain purines, which are present in the human body and many of the foods that you eat. One particular problem in the kidneys is that they become unable to filter out enough purine out of the systems. When this happens, there tends to be too much urine in the blood which then causes high levels of uric acid in the joints and other organs nano fast. The most common joints to suffer from gout are the big toes, ankles, and knees but it can occur in other parts of the body as well such as the fingers and toes.
Diet is one of the best things that you can do for gout management. You need to reduce the amount of purines that you have in your diet. Foods like organ meats such as liver, kidney, brains, and heart, dried beans and peas, meat from animals including pork and beef, shellfish, some seafood, peas, dried peas, seeds, nuts and seeds, dairy products including low fat dairy products, poultry, fish and meats should all be reduced or eliminated from your diet. Other foods that can increase the level of uric acids in your bloodstream include coffee, tea and alcohol.
There are also some medical treatments that can help with gout management. One of these treatments is called interferon therapy. Interferon therapy is used to treat the symptoms of gout along with any joint problems that are associated with it. It also helps to reduce pain and inflammation in the joint so that gout attacks are less likely to happen in those areas. This is a very popular option with those who want to use medical treatments for the disease.
Medications can also be used to lower the levels of uric-acid in the bloodstream. Many people choose to take prescription medications for gout because these medications are known to work very quickly in providing relief. These medications include acid reducers, acid neutralizers, anti-inflammatory medications, and purgative medications. Some of these medications come with a recommendation that you should drink at least 64 ounces of water per day, as it helps to flush your system. Other types of medications, such as the anti-seizure medications naproxen and colchicine, can be taken in conjunction with your prescription medications to provide even greater relief from gout symptoms.
Another form of treatment for gout, which can be considered is through the use of over-the-counter medications. These medications are available at many local pharmacies, as well as at many online sites. In most cases, these medications will not provide as much relief as those provided by medical doctors, but many people do use these medications to keep their gout attacks under control. For instance, a very commonly used over-the-counter medication for gout is the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) drugs, such as ibuprofen and aspirin. By taking one or more NSAIDs each day, you can effectively reduce the inflammation of the joints and reduce the amount of uric-acid in the bloodstream.
The effectiveness of NSAIDs in the management of gout depends upon their individual base dosages and metabolism by the body. For example, high dosages may cause a serious, damaging effect on your gastrointestinal system and could result in ulcers or other gastrointestinal problems. For this reason, it is extremely important that you only take the recommended doses and that you follow all instructions carefully. Also, in terms of self-management strategies, you should always try to limit the amount of physical activity and rest that you get during your gout attack, as this can further aggravate the symptoms. While some arthritis experts believe that taking care of yourself is one of the best ways to help avoid flare-ups, most arthritis sufferers agree that self-managing is not always as effective as being treated for the condition.
For the best results when combating gout and reducing its symptoms, it is recommended that you avoid the obvious purine-rich foods that often lead to gout: seafood, meats, diary products, meat products, and alcoholic beverages. Instead, you should try to eat more fiber-rich vegetables and fruits, which will help with your weight loss and will also help lower your levels of uric acid. As with any drugs, you should always talk to your doctor if you are considering a lifestyle change and/or new diet when you have gout. Also, keep in mind that if you make some lifestyle changes, such as stopping alcohol intake, that if you stop eating gout-causing purines, your gout may come back!