Chikungunya fever continues troubling patients in the post-recovery period. It leaves behind a persistent joint pain, popularly known as Chikungunya Arthritis or Post Viral Arthropathy. Chikungunya occurs with the bites of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes having white stripes. The virus is powerful enough to make the patients bed-ridden for week’s altogether. During this phase and post recovery too, the patients face difficulties to get up in the morning or even putting hands up for a glass of water owing to chikungunya joint pains.
Read the article to know more about Joint Pains due to chikungunya virus and ways to cure it.
Chikungunya Fever and its Aftermaths
Caused by the small bites of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, chikungunya virus leaves behind several after-effects like:
- Patients feel very weak and fatigued
- Patients experience severe joint pain that may last for few weeks.
What Causes Chikungunya Joint Pains?
The immune system of the body is built in such a way that it gets activated when it confronts any virus or foreign organism causing diseases. The immune system identifies the body cells as infective agents and attacks these cells as well as the Chikungunya Virus. Consequently, the tissues get inflamed and the cells are damaged. Moreover the virus attack activates some antibodies that hit the joint cartilages. This results in muscle and joint pain. It can also cause the restricted movements of wrists, knee and elbow joints since the Chikungunya virus dwell in these joints.
Another reason of the joint pain could be the toxins that the virus leaves behind. The toxins strike the cartilages causing inflammation and frozen joints accompanied with acute pain. The after effects can be identified after several weeks. However when Arthritis shows up, the body becomes free from the virus.
Chikungunya virus mostly affects the following joints:
- Wrist and elbow
- Knee and feet
- Sometimes the hip joints.
How To Get Rid Of Chikungunya Joint Pains?
Patients suffering from chikungunya arthritis confront a miserable health condition owing to the severe joint pain. It becomes difficult for them to perform the daily life tasks. The pain, perhaps, can be managed if the patients follow the tips mentioned below:
Slow but frequent joint movements are characteristic of chikungunya. No movements can restrict the joints making it stiff. This is the reason of increase in pain in the morning after a sleep of long hours. The following things can help in managing the pain.
- Sit down on a chair and stretch your legs.
- Move all the joints one by one.
- Twist the joints clockwise and anti-clockwise.
- Do not do a weight lifting exercise.
- Avoid heavy or complicated exercises.
Hot and Cold Packs to manage Chikungunya Joint Pains:
- Apply cold ice pack on the pain affected areas.
- Hot packs can also be used alternatively to get more relief.
Analgesic Medicines for Joint Pains:
Analgesic medicines can be taken as prescribed by the doctor. You must not take any painkillers without consulting the physician. Taking painkillers over a long time affects kidney and liver. Hence you must avoid depending on painkillers after the prescribed period.
Some home remedies can also be followed to control the pain and these are:
- Pepper: Peppers have anti-inflammatory properties. Hence, stew made with peppers can heal up the joint pain.
- Green-leafy vegetables rich in iron and vitamin E, effectively treats inflammations and thus helps in reducing the joint pain.
- Vitamin C has high antioxidants which works wonder for inflammation.
- Turmeric has extra-ordinary medicinal values. It works as a magic wand on inflammations thus reducing the joint pains in people who suffered from chikungunya.
- Garlic is yet another anti-oxidant from the nature that bears an outstanding effect on inflammation and thus on pain.
A proper diet and sleep is also very important during the fever and after recovering from it in order to treat the joint pain. During the fever, the body confronts a heavy wear and tear caused by the virus. Hence, all the nutrients that were lost in the process must be restored so that the body recovers and functions properly.
Can Ayurvedic Treatment Help Chikungunya Joint Pains?
Ayurvedic treatment is a better option if in case the pain persists for more than 3 weeks. It has proven its effectivity in reducing the joint pains. The methods include:
- Medicines: Ayurvedic medicines including oil, capsules and tablets, are planned based on the age, condition and other health factors of the patient. These medicines mainly reduce joint pain, enhance the immunity thereby lowering the weakness.
- Panchkarma Therapy: This therapy is a detoxification process that involves messaging the body and the painful areas with medicated oils. It is known for rendering effective results and cures chikungunya joint pains quickly.
Do You Need a Physiotherapist for Chikungunya Joint Pains?
Physiotherapy is an effective method to recover from chikungunya joint pain. The stiff areas like lower back, knees, back, elbow, shoulder etc. can be well cured through physiotherapy sessions. It can be an alternative method of joint pain management. A good physiotherapist would evaluate the condition and suggest proper treatment.
The expert would diagnose the intensity and location of the pain and plan the therapy.
The treatment, if planned properly by a competent expert, would ease the pain releasing the stiffness in the joints and muscles. Gradually, with a few sessions, the muscles will gain its strength, and regain the mobility. It will improve the motion of the joints as well. It is further important to practice the correct exercise at home.
It is therefore advisable to get in touch with an experienced physiotherapist to get rid of the chronic pain and immobility, a striking side-effect of Chikungunya.
How Long It Takes To Recover From Chikungunya Joint Pain?
Chikungunya joint pain may be persistent till three to four months; but sometimes it may also last for over a year. However, proper medications can reduce the duration and the patient may recover soon. In order to make the recovery process faster, the patient must consume nutritious food and lead a healthy and balanced life.
Wish you a fast recovery.