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What Integrated Treatment Looks Like For RA

Health Central discusses complementary steps you can take to help make life with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) even better.

When it comes to managing RA, experts have long agreed that complementary therapies can bring something extra to the table. 

First, know that integrative therapies can support conventional prescribed RA treatments, not replace them. The ACR’s guidelines start off by emphasizing that RA should be treated with disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs), which slow joint damage progression by suppressing inflammation. “In a disease like RA where there are very well-proven benefits that result from conventional disease modifying therapy, it is not appropriate to forego medications,” said Susan M. Goodman, M.D., a rheumatologist at HSS. 

That old adage about rusting from resting? It seems to be true when it comes to RA. “The strongest recommendation in the ACR’s guidelines is consistent engagement in exercise, because evidence demonstrated that regular exercise improves physical function and decreases pain,” Dr. Goodman says. Aerobic exercise (like walking or bicycling), resistance exercises, aquatic exercise (like swimming), and even mind-body exercise (like yoga or Tai Chi) can all help your joints (and the rest of you) feel good. So find what you enjoy—and what’s comfortable—and make it a point to move most days of the week.

Read the full article at healthcentral.com.