Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is the third most common type of arthritis behind osteoarthritis (prevalence 31 million) and gout (prevalence more than 8 million). RA affects More than 1.3 million in the U.S.
RA is defined as a chronic, long-term Autoimmune Disease, meaning your Immune System begins to attack and damage healthy cells. This damage can lead to even worse symptoms. Most people assume RA is a disease impacting the joints, but there are other areas of the body that can be impacted as well. The progression of RA is different for each individual. Symptoms and treatment can vary from person to person depending on a variety of factors.
Most treatment options include Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory drugs, Steroids, and various medications for pain relief. They can range from over-the-counter analgesics like Tylenol to prescription drugs like Tramadol, Codeine, Oxycodone and Hydrocodone. These drugs can have powerful side effects and there are those looking for non-pharmacological options. The good news is studies show that Acupuncture can help treat Arthritis pain.
What the Research Says
Both Rheumatoid Arthritis and Osteoarthritis (OA) can greatly reduce a person’s quality of life. A 2019 study revealed that people with Rheumatoid Arthritis of the hand, found significant benefits from Acupuncture. Participants reported less pain and improved quality of life, improved hand and arm strength and better overall health.
A 2018 study published in the Journal of Complementary and Alternative Medicine found, “beneficial outcomes following Acupuncture treatment for patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis include less pain and joint stiffness, and improved physical functioning. The results of various human and animal studies also suggest that Acupuncture has the potential to down-regulate levels of interleukins and tumor necrosis factor, specific cell signaling proteins collectively called cytokines that are involved in the inflammatory response and become elevated in Autoimmune conditions like Rheumatoid Arthritis.”
And the Arthritis Foundation believes there are several main benefits to getting Acupuncture treatment:
- Stress relief, following the stimulation of endorphins and oxytocin.
- Better sleep, due to the release of melatonin.
- Improved sense of well-being from the release of serotonin.
- Pain relief, as Acupuncture stimulates nerve fibers to block out pain signals.
A January 2010 study conducted a review of several studies and found Acupuncture is beneficial in treating Osteoarthritis in the knee. According to the 2019 American College of Rheumatology and Arthritis Foundation guidelines, Acupuncture for osteoarthritis of the hand, hip, and knee is conditionally recommended. While it is generally agreed that more research needs to be done, there is evidence that Acupuncture is an effective and safe alternative to prescription medication treatments.
Treatment protocols will vary depending on the severity of your symptoms. The frequency of Acupuncture visits will also vary depending on the severity of your symptoms, and may also be dictated by whether your visits are approved and reimbursed by your health insurance company. Acupuncture visits are typically performed once or twice per week. I will take a detailed health history in order to develop the treatment plan that is right for you.
Don’t spend another day in pain, make an appointment today to relieve symptoms and restore your quality of life.
Dr. Mindy Boxer is a holistic practitioner who has grown into her specialties in an organic way. Understanding a range of disciplines allows her to integrate the wisdom of Ancient healing in combination with the most recent innovations in Scientific research. This dynamic blend has enabled Dr. Boxer to help patients in the prevention and treatment of disease for over 25 years.
At age 15, Dr. Boxer began her lifelong practice of Yoga & Meditation, read many Nutrition books, began Juicing her Vegetables, and explored and all Raw Diet. Recognizing the importance of Nutrition in overall health, she earned her Ph.D. in 1986 in Nutrition and Human Behavior, providing her with a solid foundation to counsel and educate patients on how to attain health and vitality.
Her informative Lectures and appetizing Cooking Classes were the perfect forum to educate the community about the effects of food on Mood and Behavior, as well as in innovative ways to balance Body Chemistry in order to achieve overall well being.
Sensing a need to expand her training and understanding of the human body as a whole system, Dr. Boxer continued her studies in Acupuncture & Chinese Herbal Medicine, and in 1993 earned a Masters Degree in Traditional Oriental Medicine. She is licensed by the Medical Board of the State of California in Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine and is also licensed by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine.
These diverse disciplines give Dr. Boxer a unique view of the human body and how to keep it functioning in an optimal manner. Her practice of Acupuncture, Chinese Herbs and Functional Nutrition have a profound effect on Hormonal balance, Rejuvenation, and Immune system enhancement.
Dr. Boxer has a particularly keen understanding of Women’s Health issues including Gynecological irregularity, PMS, Fertility, IUI & UVF support, Healthy Pregnancy & Delivery, and Menopausal issues. Her interest in the human body as a dynamic system has given her the understanding to deal with such problems as improper Digestion and elimination, Cancer Support, Allergies, back pain, tight neck and shoulders, carpal tunnel syndrome, respiratory distress, chronic fatigue, Insomnia, Stress, Anxiety and Depression.
She has also studied the art and science of Homeopathy, earning her Diplomate in Homeopathy from the Hahnemann College of Homeopathy in 1995. This allows her to treat the whole person — physically, mentally, emotionally.
Proper Nutrition, Herbs, Acupuncture, and Homeopathic remedies are the tools Dr. Boxer utilizes to allow the body to heal itself and find its way back to balance. She is dedicated to helping her patients find “Radiant Health and Well-Being.”