To treat the pain of a gout attack, a doctor may prescribe non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, which are generally effective, according to WebMD. Other methods of controlling the pain include applying an ice pack several times a day for about a half hour, elevating the joint on a pillow and allowing it to rest, drinking more water, and following a careful diet.
A gout attack occurs due to a build-up of excess uric acid around a joint, explains WebMD. Patients with gout often learn to recognize the signs of an imminent attack. At the first sign of a gout flare-up, the patient should take the medication prescribed by his physician. A doctor may also prescribe medication to prevent a gout flare-up, but some patients continue to have attacks while their bodies adjust to the medication. However, the doctor can change the dosage or prescribe something different if the attacks become a long-term problem.
There are also lifestyle changes that can reduce gout flare-ups, advises WebMD. Drinking plenty of water stabilizes the amount of uric acid and prevents it from building up excessively. Some foods, including seafood, liver and certain vegetables, can also increase uric acid build-up, as can drinks that are sweetened with fructose.