Which Medication for Arthritis Is Right for You?With so many choices available, choosing among the different arthritis medications may seem a little overwhelming. Where do you start? The first step in choosing a medication is becoming educated about the different choices available and talking with your healthcare provider about what makes sense for your particular situation.
You may also want to consider why you are taking medication, as well as the possible risks of taking these medicines. Consider the following questions:
- Do you want to be more active?
- Do you want to decrease swelling or inflammation?
- Do you have a history of stomach bleeding or heart disease?
- Do you take low-dose aspirin?
Let's say that you are looking to treat mild pain so that you can be more active. In that case, you would look for medicines that can treat pain but which have fewer risks than other pain relievers. A good choice to start may be capsaicin cream (Zostrix®, Theragen®) or acetaminophen (Tylenol). These medicines are effective at treating mild pain, and they do not have as many side effects as NSAIDs do.
Finally, a general rule to follow when considering any pain medicine is that you should always use the lowest dose you can for the least amount of time. This will decrease the chance of side effects.
You can learn about specific treatments based on the type of arthritis by visiting any of the following eMedTV articles:
- Osteoarthritis Medication
- Rheumatoid Arthritis Medication
- Gout Medications
- Osteoarthritis Treatment
- Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment
- Gout Treatments
- Psoriatic Arthritis Treatment
- Treatment for Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Ankylosing Spondylitis Treatment
- Reactive Arthritis Treatment
- Infectious Arthritis Treatment
- Septic Arthritis Treatment.