Re: Going herbal- my very first post
Congrats on taking this step!
You can take the oral cayenne and the topical capsicum at the same time, but the oral won't help you with the joint pain, although it does have its own benefits.
For additional joint support my two favorite "treatments" are bone stock (chicken, beef, fish, whatever, as long as it's homemade) and whey, as in the liquid that separates from yogurt. I have stability issues in my hips and one knee, not to mention a family history of early joint deterioration, and this seems to help me.
You say your joint pain stems from instability- is it the joints themselves that hurt or the tendons around them? This may affect treatment.
Other herbal treatments that may help- I really like Dr. Christopher's Complete Bone and Tissue Salve (easy to find in a google search). It works wonders for any bone or deep tissue type issue.
I have never had much luck with valerian, but that may be a familial thing. When I take it I feel nothing. When my daughter takes it she gets hyper (she's 6, though, and many things affect kids in the opposite way they treat adults). I have had great luck, however, treating anxiety with kava kava. Do lots of your own research on that one, as some don't indicate it for long term use and can be liver toxic. I only use it when the anxiety gets out of control, which for me is only occasional. Valerian is a time tested herb and may work well for you, so its worth a try even though it didn't work for me. I don't know ANYTHING about weaning off anxiety meds, though, so make sure you're careful and talk to someone who knows what's up. And I don't know about passion flower, it's not an herb I've tried or read much about.