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What Is Involved in Chronic Inflammation Treatment?

By Erin J. Hill
Updated May 17, 2024
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Chronic inflammation treatment can involve the use of medications, supplements, and exercises. Surgery or physical therapy may also be needed in severe cases, although this will depend on the type of disorder causing the inflammation. Any chronic inflammatory illness should be treated by a trained medical professional, since many times prescription medications will be needed.

There are several conditions related to inflammation, including diabetes, cancer, and heart conditions. Although the symptoms may be different with each condition, these treatments are often effective at treating all of them. For instance, taking certain supplements has been shown to help with a wide range of issues. Exercise has also been shown to treat and prevent heart disease, arthritis, diabetes, and cancer. Patients should speak with their doctors to discuss treatment options in each case.

One of the most commonly used chronic inflammation treatment methods is medication. There are a wide range of drug choices available, and the type used will depend on the condition being treated and the severity of pain. Conditions such as arthritis and fibromyalgia are two examples of inflammatory conditions that are often treated using medications. Both prescription and over the counter drugs can be used depending on the severity of symptoms. Whenever possible, over the counter drugs are preferable because they typically cause fewer side effects and they carry fewer risks than prescription drugs.

Herbal supplements can also be used in chronic inflammation treatment. There are a wide range of potential herbal treatments which can be used for this purpose. St. John's Wort and licorice are two natural remedies that have been shown to reduce inflammation and pain. Others may be used to treat the underlying conditions causing these symptoms. Most times, natural remedies are combined with medicinal ones for maximum effect. They often work best when used in these combinations, and patients often report less pain when using both herbal and conventional therapies.

Exercise is another chronic inflammation treatment method patients can take advantage of. By engaging in moderate daily activity, patients can strengthen bones and muscles. This allows them to undergo less strain, so pain may be lessened. Exercise also reduces overall weight, burns fat, and stabilizes mood and blood sugar. Those who can't engage in various strenuous activities can participate in gentler workouts. These can include water aerobics, yoga, or going for a stroll around the block.

In very severe cases, surgery may be needed as a last resort chronic inflammation treatment. For instance, patients with severe arthritis of the hips may require a hip replacement or transplant. Although sometimes necessary to prevent debilitating deterioration, surgery does not always reduce pain in inflammation patients. For this reason, and due to greater risk factors, it is typically reserved for very severe cases.

Physical therapy may be needed by those with severe pain, or by those who have undergone surgery. This will help patients recover lost muscle or bone strength. Doing so can speed healing and help other treatment methods work more efficiently.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

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