Resources & Education

January 22nd, 2015

All-natural pain relievers can help prevent painkiller addiction

Young man in towel holding his back in pain, isolated on white bThe number of prescriptions written within America has increased exponentially within the last ten years. However, with the increase in new medications comes an increase in addiction and dependency on medication. For some, pain is REAL and interferes with day-to-day life. Today we are sharing a few natural painkillers that can help you deal with pain in a healthier way.

Exercise
Exercise helps to release endorphins.  Endorphins are the body’s natural pain relievers, and they can be as strong as many pain relievers. They work by blocking pain signals from ever reaching your brain.  Starting small with a brisk walk or trip to the gym can help kill pain naturally.

Get support
If you are dealing with chronic pain, talk with someone who is going through something similar, find a support group, talk with a counselor, your doctor, or even a friend. Just articulating your thoughts can help.

Try heat therapy
Heating pads, hot tubs or saunas can help relieve pain.  Heat works by increasing the flow of healing oxygen and nutrients to the damaged area, and it suppresses pain signals being sent to your brain.

Ice
Certain types of pain, including back pain often are accompanied by inflammation.  Ice is a natural way to reduce inflammation.  It acts as a local anesthetic, and slows nerve impulses, which interrupts the pain signals in the affected area.

Practice meditation
There are many different ways to meditate. Calming your mind and harnessing positive energy can help manage chronic pain.

Natural supplements

Though there is little research supporting or refuting certain all-natural supplements, there are still some measurable results proving some natural results can be beneficial.

Natural anti-inflamatories (for use in place of over-the-counter NSAIDs such as ibuprofen) include:

  • Turmeric
  • Green tea
  • Ginger
  • Rosemary
  • Cat’s claw
  • Devil’s claw
  • Willow bark

Fish oil
A recommended dose of 2-4 grams of DHA and EPA per day can help with the following:

  • Cardiovascular health
  • Depression
  • Asthma
  • Inflammation
  • Headaches
  • Back pain
  • Nerve pain

Vitamin D
Low levels of Vitamin D can occur and lead to Seasonal Affective Disorder (especially in Buffalo). Increasing vitamin D levels within the body can help with:

  • Depression
  • Chronic bone and joint pain
  • Fibromyalgia

Magnesium
Magnesium supplements can:

  • Reduce spasms
  • Reduce cramps
  • Reduce issues with fibromyalgia

Magnesium can easily be depleted by consuming alcohol, so maintaining consistency is crucial.

Acupuncture
The ancient Chinese healing technique of acupuncture is still not completely understood, but it has been proven in medical trials to reduce certain types of chronic pain, including back pain.

Massage
A therapeutic massage can help increase blood flow to affected areas. It also helps release endorphins which are the body’s natural pain relievers.

All-natural healing can be a beneficial substitute to potentially dangerous prescriptions. For more information on supplements or holistic therapies and how they may affect you, contact your health care provider today.  

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