If your arthritis pain is mild, if you have only a few joints affected by the disease, or if oral medications don't completely control your pain, you may find a topical pain reliever or topical analgesic useful.
Topical painkillers are available as creams, salves, or gels. The active ingredients of topical painkillers include:
For many people with arthritis, morning is the most difficult part of the day. Waking up with stiff joints or joint pain is a common complaint. Although it may seem like the hardest time of day to get moving, doing a few stretches in the morning can give you a more limber start to your day.
It only takes a few minutes to stretch and warm up your muscles and joints. But for the best results, the key is to do arthritis stretches every day. Taking a warm shower before or after stretching can also help...
Capsaicin. Found naturally in hot peppers, capsaicin is found in drug stores under the brand names of Capzasin-P, Zostrix, and other drugs. Capsaicin works by blocking the transmission of a pain-relaying substance called substance P to the brain.
Counter-irritants. Camphor, eucalyptus oil, and menthol are found in a variety of agents such as ArthriCare, Eucalyptamint, and Icy Hot amongst others. These substances are able to relieve pain by tricking the body to feel the coolness or heat of these agents.
Salicylates. This substance is available in Aspercreme, BenGay, and Flexall. Salicylates work by decreasing pain and inflammation.
NSAIDs. Topical NSAIDs penetrate the skin barrier and deliver the medication to the site of pain. Pennsaid and Voltaren gel are examples.