About 100 million people in the U.S. suffer from chronic pain, according to the American Academy of Pain Medicine, and if you’re one of those people, you now how difficult it can be to find meaningful relief for your symptoms. To help you feel better, we’ve gathered this list of five simple ways to manage your pain at home, without the need for surgical intervention:
1. Stay Hydrated
Your body is about 60 percent water, and that means it depends on ample hydration to function properly. Drinking plenty of water throughout the day is essential for helping ensure your cells, tissues and organs have the fluids they need to work properly. Aim for about eight glasses a day.
2. Turn Up the Heat
Bathing in warm water helps relax sore muscles while also relieving mental stress. Toss in a few aromatic herbs like lavender, bergamot or chamomile to stimulate your body’s natural relaxation chemicals, or add a handful of Epsom salts to reduce inflammation and even provide some relief for migraines and other chronic headaches. Warm water is the key – avoid very hot water, which can sometimes making inflammation worse.
3. Try Aromatherapy
Thanks to online shopping, it’s easy to stock up on essential oils of aromatic herbs and plants like lavender, eucalyptus, rosemary and peppermint, all of which have been shown to help reduce several types of chronic pain issues, including chronic joint pain and headaches. Some oils can be rubbed into your skin while others are better used by releasing their scent via steam or by simply inhaling them from their containers. Be sure to read recommendations before using essential oils, and use and apply them only as directed.
4. Ice, Ice Baby
The warmth of a hot bath is great for relieving pain from aching muscles and joints, but some types of pain – especially those involving swelling – are better relieved with an ice pack. No ice pack on hand? Use a bag of frozen peas wrapped in a lightweight dishcloth. Apply the cold pack no more than 20 minutes per hour, and never apply ice directly to the skin.
5. Be More Active
Physical activity promotes circulation to relieve painful inflammation in joints and muscles, plus, studies have shown that physical activity releases brain chemicals (called endorphins) that help relieve pain, reduce stress and improve your overall mood. Keep your activity at a moderate level, and always get your doctor’s “OK” before beginning any new exercise program, just to be safe.
Don’t let chronic pain interfere with your life!
If you’re dealing with chronic pain, you know how debilitating it can be. Don’t let pain keep you from doing the things you love. Take the first step to living pain free and call Spinal Interventions today at (801) 223-4860 for a consultation.