Did you know gout affects approximately 8.3 million people in the United States? Gout is a type of arthritis that occurs when too much uric acid builds up in the joints and crystalizes, which can be very painful. Uric acid is a natural waste product from the digestion of foods that contain purines – a natural compound.
Here are some ways that may be able to soothe your gout:
- Take an over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, such as ibuprofen or naproxen.
- Avoid any medications containing acetylsalicylic acid, such as aspirin, which could worsen gout symptoms.
- Apply ice to the joint for 10-20 minutes at a time. This can dull the pain.
- Keep the joint elevated. This action can ease the pressure on the joint and reduce pain.
- Take a temporary break from physical exertion. Doing so may relieve the joint from stress and pressure.
- Take up a low-stress, physical activity to condition the body.
- Gout tends to be more likely found in people who are overweight, so the long and short-term effects of low-exertion exercise can have a positive outcome.
- For more on gout and exercise, we recommend ‘Could These Exercises Help Your Gout?!’.
- Walk with a cane during an acute flare-up to help stave pressure off the joint.
- Modify or cut socks to fit your gout flare-up. Doing this can limit the pain in the toe area.
- Follow a diet low in purines to limit the effects of uric acid, as seen in our February blog, here.
- Stay hydrated to make sure gout flare ups are kept to a minimal.
- Drink at least 8 cups of water a day.
If done properly, monitoring your gout symptoms can lead to a happier and healthier life. If you or a loved one are living with gout, you can also consider a clinical trial. Preferred Research Partners in Little Rock, Arkansas is currently enrolling patients for a gout clinical study. Sign up below for more information.