Joint Pain

True joint pain is known as arthralgia and it may or may not go together with joint inflammation or arthritis. Pain that seems to be originating from the joints may sometimes originate from other bodily structures such as ligaments, tendons or muscles. Bursitis and tendinitis are examples of disorders that originate from structures outside the joints.

Different joints are affected by different disorders. This is the reason why doctors would treat pain affecting a single joint differently than pain in more than one joint. When multiple joints are involved, it is quite possible that both joints on either side of the body are affected (for example, either both knees or both shoulders). This is called symmetric arthritis. In other disorders, the pain moves from joint to joint and is known as migratory arthritis.

Symptoms of Joint Pain

The main symptom of this disease is severe pain in the affected joints. The tissues in and around the joints become inflamed and movement of the joint becomes extremely painful. Untreated arthritis may lead to permanent deformity of the affected joints.

  • Fever
  • Immense pain and stiffness in affected muscles, especially stiffness and pain (i.e., fingers, wrists, elbows, knees, ankles) in the morning
  • Excruciating pain and stiffness in the joints
  • Redness of joints, tiny red spots on skin
  • Loss of range of motion
  • Locking or popping of the joint
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Limping
  • Cramps and tics in muscles
  • Warm or hot joints
  • Pain or discomfort worsened by prolonged sitting or standing
  • Bruising or discoloration
  • Inability to bear weight

Root Causes of Joint Pain

Usually, the pain originating from multiple joints can be attributed to arthritis. Disorders that are at the root of arthritis may show different tendencies, such as:

  • The number of joints involved
  • The specific part of the central skeleton involved, such as the spine or pelvis
  • Whether the condition is acute or chronic

The following medical conditions are some of the possible causes of joint pain as a symptom. There are likely to be other possible causes.

  • Various forms of arthritis
  • Joint injury
  • Joint strain
  • Joint sprain
  • Previous joint injury
  • Infections – many infections cause aching joints and muscular pain
    – Viral infection
    – Common cold
    – Flu
    – Bacterial infection
  • Lupus
  • Osteonecrosis
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • Anxiety (causes muscle tension and joint inflammation)
  • Gout
  • Lyme disease
  • Gonorrhea
  • Hypothyroidism

Ayurveda and Joint Pain

Joint pain is known as Sandhi Shoola according to Ayurveda.

Causes include both internal and external factors. According to Ayurveda, joint & muscle pains are caused by the aggravation of Vata dosha (Air + Space biohumor). Ama associated with Vata quickly moves to different parts of the body and accumulates where circulation is sluggish or slow such as the hands, knees and other bone joints, filling the blood vessels with a waxy material. It is also more common in old age when Vata naturally increases in the body.

The other type of joint problem occurs due to Kapha dosha (biohumor related to Earth and Water). Kapha governs the lubrication and structural aspects of the body. The heavy and cold qualities of Kapha affect the joints which feel stiff and dense. This kind of joint issue is commonly observed during cold, wet weather especially around spring (Kapha season). In time, the toxins (ama) mix with the natural lubricants in the joints to form a sticky, toxic substance that hampers mobility and upsets circulation. Finally, the structure of the joints and bones start to get damaged. Any changes in the morphology of the joints then the problem becomes more difficult to treat.

Meats, foods such as ice cream, excessive concentrated dairy such as aged cheese or goods of sour cream or cheese, cold foods especially taken during cold weather, heavy cakes, pastries and candies, packaged and processed foods with little fiber are the main dietary causes. Gas-producing vegetables and legumes also create more internal air which moves the toxins to different parts to worsen the condition. This ama blocks tissue pores and passages. It causes heaviness and weakness of the heart which becomes the seat of the disease.

Ayurveda Treatment for Joint Pain

Herbs Guduchi (Tinospora Cordifolia): Giloy or guduchi is a potent tonic that works as an all natural joint pain relief by removing excess Vata from the body. It also cleans the blood, boosts circulation, beats inflammations, tones up the nervous system and eliminates ama, making it a very remedy for when Vata accumulates in the joints. This herb can be taken in the form of giloy juice, tablets or powder.

Ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera): Indian ginseng or ashwagandha is one of the top natural remedies for aching joints and muscles because of its anti-inflammatory properties. It is also a great herb for calming Vata with a special affinity for the muscle and bone tissues. Ashwagandha is well-known for its action as an adaptogen and will ease pain caused by the stiffening of joints and muscles due to constant stress.

Turmeric (Curcuma Longa): One of the staples in Indian kitchens, turmeric or haldi is one of the best herbal remedies for joint pain. This warming spice is extremely balancing and clarifying in nature which helps keep Vata in check. It supports digestion and promotes healthy elimination while cleansing the blood – all the while acting as a rejuvenator for the joint tissues.

Licorice (Glycyrrhiza Glabra): Mulethi or licorice is one of the time-honored Ayurvedic remedies for joint pain. Its main function is lubrication and this supports the lubrication of the joint tissues.

Onion (Allium Cepa): Pyaaz or onion are among the top natural remedies for aching joints and muscles as it can lower pain and inflammation. The abundance of phenols and flavonoids can be easily benefited from as onions can be used for everyday cooking in soups, stews and sauces.

Garlic (Allium Sativum): Lahsun or garlic is a natural reliever of joint pain being of the same family as garlic. This household herb has a compound called diallyl disulfide that may have some effect in reducing cartilage-damaging enzymes. Add a teaspoon of olive oil and a quarter teaspoon of grated garlic in a cup of warm water. Consume twice daily. Another way to benefit from garlic is to grate a clove of garlic and mix with two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar. Take this garlic + ACV mixture in a cup of warm water.

Fenugreek (Trigonella Foenum-Graecum): Soak a teaspoon of methi seeds overnight. Eat these seeds every morning to get completely natural joint pain aid.

Ginger (Zingiber Officinale): Adrak or ginger can be consumed fresh or dry (powder) to get relief from arthritis. Steep a couple of fresh slices of ginger to make an herbal tea for joint pain. Make this ginger tea with other joint-soothing ingredients like turmeric and cinnamon, and sweeten with honey to relax your painful knees and elbows. Add a few drops of ginger oil to two tablespoons of warm mustard oil. Massage the affected joints with this oil to reduce swelling and pain. One can also make a warm compress by boiling some ginger and tea leaves together. Take off the flame and let it cool slightly. Dip a cloth into the tea and apply the cloth as a compress on the affected area.

Ayurvedic Supplements (to be taken under physician’s guidance – Consult Now)  

               Arth Plus

               Rumartho Gold

               Mahayograj Guggulu

              Trivrit Avaleha

               Yogaraj Guggulu

               Dashmoola Kadha

               Maharasnadi Kadha

               Punarvadi Kadha


               Arthosure Capsule and Liquid

               Brihatvat Chintamani Ras

               Mahavat Vidhvansan Ras

Ayurvedic Massage

              Mahanarayana oil

              Mahamash Oil

              Rhuma Oil

              Mahavishgarb Oil

              Arthosure Oil

  • Avoid curd and all sour items, pulses (except moong dal), rice, meat, fish, white bread, sugar, refined cereals, fried foods, tea or coffee.
  • Potato, lemon, celery seeds and bitter gourd are highly beneficial.
  • Favor a Vata pacifying diet.
  • Steep ginger into hot water and sip on this water regularly.
  • Bowels should be cleansed daily.
  • Avoid damp place and exposure to cold weather.
  • Don’t indulge in day-time sleeping.
  • Limit yourself to restricted exercise.
  • Lubricate your joints by massaging with a medicated oil or some castor oil. Then, follow with a heating pad to comfort the joint and flush out ama.
  • Live a life that’s balanced by structure and routine. For example, eating and sleeping at the same times every day can be very helpful in balancing Vata dosha.
  • Breath of Victory (Ujjayi)
  • Alternate Nostril Breathing (Nadi Shodana)
  • Cow Pose (Bitalasana)
  • Cat Pose (Marjariasana)
  • Standing Warrior Pose (Virbhadrasana)