Common Home Remedies for Treating Gout

May 7th 2016

The best way to treat a gout attack is with prescription medication. If your prescription meds are no longer working as they should, see your doctor to have your condition and prescriptions evaluated. Add these home remedies to help alleviate the pain and discomfort of a gout attack.

Drink Water

Drinking more than eight glasses of water each day helps wash the excess uric acid away. It also flushes the entire urinary system to keep kidney stones from developing.

Avoid Alcohol

Don't drink alcohol when you're in the middle of a gout attack or sense one coming on. Alcohol keeps the body from getting rid of uric acid, thereby prolonging a gout attack. Studies show that drinking beer and liquor can increase the chances of developing gout; drinking wine doesn't appear to have the same effect.

Take NSAIDs

While your doctor may prescribe stronger pain relief medications for you, simply taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen or naproxen can lessen the pain of gout by reducing the inflammation associated with it. Avoid aspirin, however, as it may make the pain worse.

Watch Your Diet

Foods that are high in purines are key culprits in provoking a gout attack. Purines are chemicals that break down inside the body to form uric acid. Stay away from high-purine foods, which include red meats, seafood and organ meats. In particular, fatty fish such as mackerel and sardines are notorious for bringing on a gout attack. Fruit drinks sweetened with fructose also exacerbate gout attacks. Adjusting your diet at all times to avoid purine-heavy foods can help prevent or minimize gout attacks.

Elevate the Joint

Try elevating the painful joints during a gout attack. Elevation reduces inflammation because it decreases the flow of blood to the inflamed joint. Keeping the joint immobilized lets it start to heal and feel better. Some doctors believe that icing the joint helps relieve pain, while others feel it encourages further crystallization of the uric acid.

Exercise and Lose Weight

While you're probably not able to exercise during a gout attack, exercising and losing weight between attacks is one of the best things you can do to prevent gout from getting worse. A diet designed to prevent gout is typically high in protein and low in fat.

Conclusion

Gout occurs as a result of a buildup of excess uric acid in the bloodstream. It manifests as pain and stiffness in joints. Gout sufferers can often sense an attack coming on a couple of hours before it hits. While doctors can prescribe medicine to take during a gout flare-up, there are also home remedies that may ease the pain and stiffness.

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