woman suffering from osteoarthritis in her shoulder

Joint Pain & Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease which involves the breakdown due to wear and tear of the cartilage in the joints.  Friction of bone rubbing on bone, compression of nerves and inflammation all create pain.  

What are the symptoms of osteoarthritis?

  • Pain and stiffness in the joints especially with increased usage
  • Limited range of motion
  • Joint swelling
  • Joint cracking, popping or creaking
  • Changes in the appearance of the joint – swelling, bone deformities

What are the natural treatments for osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis is caused by wear and tear on the joints either because of improper alignment or aging. Supplying nutrients for the body to rebuild joint tissue like cartilage, can relieve the pain by addressing the underlying cause of the problem. While the joint regenerates, supplements and herbs can be used to relieve pain and reduce inflammation. Acupuncture rounds out naturopathic treatment by helping to speed healing and reduce pain.  Our naturopathic doctors can put together a customized program for your osteoarthritis taking all of your health concerns into consideration. 

How can a chiropractor treat osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis is most commonly seen in the weight-bearing joints of the body, including the low back, hips, knees and feet. It is associated with chronic wear and tear an abnormal movement of theses joints. Chiropractic restores the normal motion and can reduce excess wear and tear on joints and the pain associated with it. Treatment typically includes joint mobilization and/or adjustments, traction and home exercises and also advice about how to minimize the physical stressors associated with the development of osteoarthritis.  Our custom orthotics can also help reduce wear and tear on the feet, knees, hips and back. 

How can a registered massage therapist treat osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease characterized by the wear and tear of cartilage. Massage therapy helps reduce stiffness and pain by improving the circulation around the affected joint and by reducing muscle spasms and trigger points that would be aggravating osteoarthritic symptoms. Passive range of motion and passive gentle, passive stretches are also integrated in a massage therapy session which helps improve joint nutrition and keeps muscles supple. Massage therapy is a valuable treatment option for osteoarthritis patients along with appropriate physical activity including postural stretches and strengthening and non-weight bearing exercises.

Natural Treatment for Osteoarthritis Research

Telomere Length

Cells from the knee joint of osteoarthritis patients were found to have abnormally short telomeres.  Source: Complementary Prescriptions Journal, Vol.26, Issue 12, Dec. 2012


Daily supplementation with Zingiber officinalis extract (ginger) was found to reduce pain in patients with osteoarthritis of the knee or hip.  Source: J Altern Complement Med. 2012 Jun; 18(6):583-8.


The EPA fraction has been found to help stop destruction of osteoarthritis affected joints.  Source: Pol Merkur Lekarski. 2012 May;32(191):329-34.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D supplementation may slow progression of osteoarthritis. Additional research is needed.  Source: Rheumatology (Oxford), 2012 March 29

Turmeric & Boswellia

A formulation containing Curcuma longa (turmeric) and Boswellia serrata extracts was found to be more successful than celecoxib for symptom scoring and clinical examination in knee osteoarthritis.  Source: Mol Med Rep. 2013 Nov;8(5):1542-8

Vitamin C

Vitamin C supplementation reduced risk of knee osteoarthritis by 11%, compared to controls, suggesting vitamin C may exert a preventative effect against incidence of knee osteoarthritis.  Source: Public Health Nutr, 2010 Aug 16:1-7.

Chicory Root Extract

Supplementation with chicory root extract may improve symptoms of osteoarthritis in those with osteoarthritis of the hip or knee.  Source: BMC Musculoskelet Disord, 2010; 11(1): 156.