With little awareness, I used to think that OTC medication such as paracetamol or anti-inflammatory medication like ibuprofen are the only choices when dealing with pain. Increasingly, I become aware that there are a number of ways to deal with pain using natural methods. While these methods may not provide instantaneous relief, at least, you eliminate the problems or side effects that you may otherwise have with drug treatments. Here are a couple of natural methods to help you relieve your own pain.
1. Heat versus Cold. Some people swear by the use of ice packs and cold massage. These packs can be store-bought or you can use a package of corn or peas from your freezer. Wrap the cold pack in a cloth and then gently massage the painful area for five to seven minutes. Once the area begins to feel numb that is the time to stop. Others prefer heat. A hot water bottle or heating pad applied to the lower back for fifteen to twenty minutes can chase away the back pain in a matter of days.
2. Exercise. Tai Chi or yoga are two excellent exercises for back pain. The stretching aspect of yoga lessens the tension on the muscles, increases blood flow, and promotes healing. Tai Chi is similar in that it too promotes healing and prevention of back pain by the use of gentle movement and non-impact exercises. It teaches you how to improve your posture and balance. Tai Chi also helps to build muscle strength and balance.
3. Supplements. Supplements are used to rebuild bone and cartilage, reduce pain and inflammation as well as relax muscles. They are divided into two groups. The first ones build strength and the second relieves pain. When deciding to use nutritional supplements it is best to first discuss it with your doctor. Make certain that your back problem is not caused by something more serious that requires medical intervention. Then your doctor can help you determine the correct dosages of the supplements.
Some useful strength builders are Glucosamine sulfate, calcium, magnesium, and vitamins C and D. All of these will help to build bone and cartilage. Niacinamide, a form of vitamin B, assists with the healing of cartilage and like white willow bark, boswellia, bromelain and turmeric are also anti-inflammatories. Devils claw diminishes muscle pain, is an anti-inflammatory, and will enhance the effects of regular pain medications. S-Adenosylmethionine strengthens the muscles.
4. Water therapy. This allows someone with a back injury or severe back pain to exercise in a way that makes the physical effort much less. Although you will do very similar exercises to what you’d do out of the water, the buoyancy sports your weight, making it easier to do the workout. As well, warm water therapies are a good method of reducing pain and relaxing the muscles.
5. Massage therapy. This is highly recommended for anyone who has back pain or suffering from aches. Massage therapy helps to improve blood circulation and muscle tone. It also stimulates the release of endorphins. You can easily learn a few basic massage techniques to apply them to yourself or to your family members to relieve from pain and stress.
With so many options, you just need to decide which combination works best for you. Also, work on good posture. Hold yourself straight; keep your shoulders back and your head up. Don’t lead too sedentary a lifestyle or you’ll find yourself inflicted with aches and pains. Adopt regular sleeping hours and make sure that you have enough rest every day.