The AgingCare.com forum is filled with people coming together to share valuable information. We’ve compiled experienced caregivers’ best suggestions for non-pharmaceutical methods for relieving joint pain.

Alternative Treatments for Arthritis Pain

“It may be that a lot of pain is muscular and might be relieved by massage. To avoid injury, massage therapy should only be done by someone with proper training. My mother had her hip replaced and my cousin’s father, an old boxing trainer and masseur, worked on her thigh once. It was amazing how it relieved 90 percent of her pain. I’m so grateful he used his expertise to help my mother.” –Jinx4740

“While many do not live where marijuana has been legalized for medicinal purposes, SOME have access to a prescription for medical marijuana. It can be prepared as a cream, which is applied to the skin over painful areas and does a remarkable job of killing pain with few side effects. Those types with higher CBDs are most effective and cause less drowsiness. As a liquid, it can make some folks very sleepy, but it kills pain, reduces gut irritations, relieves some asthma symptoms and decreases some myoclonic seizure activity. No, it does not cause the munchies, but it can allow those who have stopped eating due to nausea from chemotherapy or other illnesses, to eat again. It is less addictive than harder drugs and has far fewer adverse effects.” –chimonger

“Try yoga, massage or acupuncture for pain. It works great, except Medicare doesn’t pay for these options.” –ferris1

“You can now get Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) lotion at the drugstore. It is a wonderful anti-inflammatory product. You can also get regular Epsom salts, add them to the bathtub and soak the affected area. The magnesium absorbs through the skin and helps the entire body.” –pamstegma

“Ginger root has anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties. I use it in my juicer. I also put some slices of ginger root in a jar of honey and drink some every day. Raw garlic is good, too. There are many other natural remedies.” –MariaDoGato

“For arthritis, I’m a big proponent of turmeric. I’ve been using it for almost a year. I quit having my knees drained, and I no longer need the steroid shots either. There are a ton of clinical studies on the efficacy of turmeric, and it helps with many conditions by reducing inflammation. It’s been an important ingredient in Indian food for thousands of years. I take a daily 500 mg supplement with piperine (black pepper) to increase its bioavailability. If you are on blood thinners, check with your doctor first, as supplements can affect medication absorption.” –blannie

“My father and friends his age took a blend of honey and cider vinegar for years and swore it kept arthritis pain at bay. I believe this is available in tablet form also if you don’t want to use the liquids.” –GardenArtist

“Professional paraffin wax baths are very helpful for relieving arthritis pain in the hands and feet.” –niyah321oki

“Try a TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) unit. TENS is a type of physiotherapy where small electrical pads (electrodes) are stuck to the skin over an affected joint. The machine delivers small pulses of electricity through the electrodes, which numb the nerve endings and prevent pain signals from reaching the brain, thereby controlling pain.” –blannie

“I often find heat is the best option for my elderly patients. Some prefer dry heat, and some prefer wet heat. This is more a matter of preference. Use a heating pad (there are many different kinds, like electric, microwavable, hot water bottle, etc.) wrapped in layers of cloth. The cloth is especially important for preventing burns since the elderly usually have thinner skin and decreased sensation in the area. Apply the heating pad to the affected area for no more than 20 minutes at a time.” –OwenWong

“Arthritis often produces swelling, and you may want to have your loved one try those reusable cold packs that stay flexible when frozen. They are a huge help because they actually conform to whatever area is being treated.” –Dontask4handout

“I’m in a state that legalized medical marijuana, and it has been a blessing for my father. If it is available in your state, I recommend it highly. The best thing for inflammation and arthritis, from what I have read, are products that are high in CBD with a smidgen of THC.” –Monkeygirl