I got diagnosed with Sacroilitis (arthritis of the sacro-iliac joint) last year (thanks Jan for the suggested diagnosis), I was petrified to start meds again as i haven't been on meds since i was 13yrs old (20 years ago). The rheumy had suggested (humira , remicade etc...) but i just couldn't go through with it, I believed that there was another way. I have spent the last 9 months enduring a lot of pain even to the point of not being able to walk, but i kept searching for alternative methods to deal with this arthritis that had turned me into an old man. Thank G-d I'm still off meds and here is a list of things that i do to keep me functioning smoothly (hopefully this can help someone out there)
1. Try not to sit down to long. I work at my computer standing up and rest by lying down on my side. If i need to sit down at the table/in the car i get a nice paded pillow to take the pressure off the joint. I try to avoid sitting on anything hard, if there's a wooden bench and i have to sit down i will sit on my hand.
2. Yoga stretch - feet up the wall (you can see how its done here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cth7HbziaHQ ) I found this stretch searching through forums by a lady who claimed that in 40 years of having sacroilitis this stretch helped her more than anything. For me personally this stretch was near impossible when i started, now i do it about 5x a day for 5mins each. It's so beneficial to keep the muscles loose.
3. Curcumin. This is an amazing natural herb from the tumeric plant, the catch is you have to have to find the right type for maximum absorption. The brand i use is from Life extension its called Super Bio Curcumin 400mg. You can try other brands but make sure it has the active ingredient BCM-95 that allows for maximum absorption. I take 1 a day and it helps to lower inflammation for both my arthritis and pouchitis. I personally believe that this is more effective than probiotics for the gut. You can read more about BCM-95 here http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2792534/ .
4. Starch free. This is complex and i should add that i have a very disciplined diet already. The thing i didn't realise is that the starch specifically in rice was causing a complex chain of events that caused my arthritis to flare. Since i stopped starch a lot of the pain went away and i really feel more in control. This theory comes from Dr Ebringer you can read about it here http://www.spondylitis.org/about/diet_lowstarch.aspx
5. Nettle Tea. I know this sounds very alternative and hippy, but it's a really amazing tea. It reduces inflammation and makes me feel much better. I buy it in crushed leaves and brew it for at least 5min. Be careful as this is a diuretic and it will make you pish, make sure you drink plenty of water before and after.
These 5 things along with a non-stressful environment have really helped me to manage my sacroilitis. At the end of the day everyones bodies are different and what works for one person may not work for another, but this is what has worked for me. If you try any of these alternatives please research them first to make sure there are no side effects for you.
Thanks for reading, hope it helps someone