What Is Bursitis?
The bursa, which is a small fluid filled sac, can get inflamed or irritated, leading to Bursitis. The bursa works to relieve friction between many of the tissues of your body in the joint areas. There are over 150 bursas in the body that lubricate the areas where the bones, tendons, and muscles move. If you have a bursa that is inflamed it can be very painful and cause pain and stiffness in the tissues surrounding the joints. Bursitis is not enjoyable in the least and can happen in many places throughout your body.
Your doctor is the best one to diagnose bursitis in your body. They can tell because they will feel the area that you have stiffness and pain in, and will look for swelling as well. They can do x-rays, blood tests, and can even analyze the fluid in your affected area to see if it is inflamed. Bursitis most often occurs because of stress and overuse of an area. For older people, the common cause is infection, arthritis, or even gout. It can also be due to a direct trauma such as resting your elbow on your desk for many hours of the day. The most commonly affected areas are the shoulder, elbow, hip, ankle, knee, and buttocks. This is because these are the most frequently used joints and muscles.
The more you are out of shape, the more your bursitis has a chance to act up. Also, if you exert yourself in activities of the same type frequently, like playing tennis everyday, you are at risk of bursitis, especially if you take some time off and then start playing again. You have to condition your body for use, so whenever you start any activity you need to allow your body some time to build up the muscles and joints so there will be no pain.
The treatment for bursitis is usually rest, or in more severe cases, the use of a splint to keep the affected area immobilized. For chronic inflammation it is best to apply heat, or for acute inflammation it is best to apply ice. There are times when the fluid needs to be removed from the affected area so that it will lessen some of the swelling and pain. Natural treatments such a massage, physical therapy, reflexology, and hydrotherapy are also excellent ways to treat a bursitis flare-up.
Bursitis usually clears up in a week or two with natural treatments, but there are ways to relieve the pain with herbal remedies. Since the pain and inflammation can be at its worse in the very beginning, the earlier you start the herbal treatment the better off you will be. Herbs such as Boswellia, White Willow, and Turmeric have incredible anti-inflammatory properties that will work to relieve some of the swelling causing the pain. Also, Devil’s Claw has been proven effective in treating certain joint conditions whereas taking away some of the everyday pain. Finally, you have Glucosamine which is a substance that is already found in your body, but when adding more it gives your body a higher concentration in your joints and tissues so that it can repair cartilage while at the same time, it is helping to maintain your joint mobility.