Gout swelling can be treated just by knowing what it is caused by. For instance, if you eat too much red meat, your joints may become swollen. Therefore, you know you need to restrict your red meat consumption. Other culprits you should stay away from are:
- Oily fish
- Liver and other organ meats
You should also stay hydrated; dehydration can bring on swelling from gout, because it makes the uric acid in your blood more apt to crystallize.
Treating The Swelling from Gout
The first thing to do when you are trying to alleviate the pain and swelling from gout is to treat it as soon as possible. It goes without saying, the sooner, the better. Once gout symptoms start to become more pronounced, it will be difficult to get them under control. You will be in agony from the pain and in many cases, debilitated for a few days.
Let’s look at some interventions to keep this from happening. There are medications that will help reduce the swelling such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatories such as ibuprofen. Colchicine should be started as soon as you know the swelling is coming on, if your doctor has prescribed this to you. If your doctor has prescribed any type of steroid for you, you should take this as soon as possible. See if your physician will let you keep them on hand as a backup so you can respond to an attack right away. Other things you may want to have on hand are:
- Quercitin: This supplement has anti-inflammatory benefits that would help reduce swelling. It is a natural substance found in fruits and other foods. You would have to eat a lot of fruit to benefit from Quercitin, however. It is available at your health food store as a supplement.
- Ice: This treatment is a good way to reduce swelling, but it may make your joints more painful. You may want to take a pain medication 20 minutes before applying ice, so that you will not feel the discomfort from it. Make sure you have something between you and the ice pack to keep your skin from getting frostbite. The best thing to use would be of cloth-like material, NOT plastic. Apply to your swollen joints for approximately 20 minutes. You should only apply it with at least 40 minutes between applications.
- Elevation: If you elevate your extremity, gravity will help the swelling by allowing the bodily fluids to drain from the area. When the joint is aggravated by injury, extra blood flows to the area and more uric acid crystals can accumulate there. By elevating it, the excess blood can’t accumulate as easily.
The best way to treat gout and its symptoms is through prevention. However, that is not always possible. If you can treat the swelling before it becomes full-blown, you will keep the gout attack at bay.