Know the Dangers of Arthritis Medication for You and Your Best Friends
By: Laura Mann, O.M.D., L.Ac., M.H.
When it comes to arthritis, our animals are not very different from ourselves. The cumulative effect of years of use causes degenerative changes in the joints whether human or animal. This can lead to osteoarthritis, a wearing down of the joints and cartilage (or cushion covering the joints), and a decrease in joint lubrication. Pain, stiffness, swelling and inflammation inevitably result.
The standard treatment regimen for joint pain and inflammation includes the use of cortisone-containing drugs and NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as, phenylbutazone (bute) and aspirin for dogs and horses, rimadyl, etogesic and metacam also for dogs, and advil, aleve, motrin and aspirin for people. These drugs help to manage the pain, but do not come without serious side effects. Cortisone can cause cataracts, glaucoma, diabetes, liver disease, thyroid suppression, osteoporosis, bone necrosis (decay), peptic ulcer and lowered immunity to disease. The side effects of NSAIDs include gastrointestinal ulcer, liver and kidney disease and failure and bone marrow suppression. In addition, there is evidence that long-term use of cortisone and NSAIDs actually damages the joints and accelerates the progression of joint deterioration.
Many people are not aware of these side effects for themselves or their animals until serious damage is done. I always recommend trying natural alternatives first before taking or giving medication, as the body can only handle so many “hits” before it “springs a leak,” so to speak. We all need to give the body time to heal. We live in a society that wants immediate results and unfortunately the body doesn’t work that way. There is definitely a time and a place for western medication, but try to reserve the “big guns” for serious situations. Case in point, look what has been created by the indiscriminate use of antibiotics. We now have bionic strains of superbugs that we can’t control. Natural products are not going to work in every situation, but very often they can help or at least alleviate some of the symptoms. Often I will recommend the use of alternative medication along with a very small dose of the western medication if there are no contraindications to doing so. If a drug does need to be taken, I recommend supplements to protect the liver, kidneys, bones and the gastro-intestinal system.
Some of the natural remedies for arthritis that I have used successfully for many years are Glucosamine Sulfate, Boswellia Serrata, Perna Canaliculus, Yucca Root, White Willow Bark and Turmeric (Curcuma) Root. Humans and animals alike have an amazing healing ability if given time and the right nutritional support. I recommend my EZ MOTION products to help decrease joint pain and inflammation, repair and renew injured joint structures and slow joint and cartilage degeneration. EZ MOTION is a natural, effective, full-spectrum joint supplement free from undesirable side effects.
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