12 Steps You Can Do to Alleviate Chronic Pain Without Medication

Written by - Reviewed by Consumer Health Digest Team

Published: Sep 2, 2015 | Last Updated: Dec 12, 2018

Relieve Chronic Pain

We are all looking for ways to relieve chronic pains. Headaches, backaches, it’s all a real pain in the rear. Besides medications, there must be alternatives to help you relax.

Here we will discuss a few things you can do to relieve chronic pain – without a prescription.

First and foremost – Learn deep breathing or meditation to help you relax.

It is stated that deep breathing and meditation are techniques that help your body relax, which may ease pain. Tension and tightness are said to seep from muscles as they receive a quiet message to relax.

MRIs show the brain of a person meditating has a significant decrease in pain reception according to a study released in 2011 and published in the Journal of Neuroscience.

One course of meditation is called the “body scan.” The technique is described as five steps that can take about 20-30 minutes to complete. It is stated that with practice, this or other mindfulness techniques like it, have been beneficial to many chronic pain sufferers.

5 step of body scan

Step 1 – Preparation

Accordingly, the first step involves setting yourself up for your practice. It is recommended to choose a quiet and comfortable place you can lie down. The key is not to be distracted, so let others know not to disturb you for the duration of your meditation.

Step 2 – Grounding

Once you are comfortable, turn your awareness to your body. Generally feel the parts of your body that are in contact with the surface on which you are laying. Also, notice the position your body is in. Mentally examine your body for any areas where there may be tension – the shoulders, the jaw, the stomach. See if you can consciously release or soften those areas of the body so that you can be totally relaxed.

Relaxed Body

Step 3 – Present Moment Awareness

This step involves the decision to let go of the past and the future, let go of thoughts, and become fully engaged in the present moment. You will want to focus your awareness only on your body and let everything else drop away.

Step 4 – The Body Scan

This is the actual “scan” part. With your mind, you scan – or turn your attention to – each part of your body, one at a time. Here it is stated that you may start with one foot and give it all your attention. Feel into the whole foot. Notice any sensation of temperature. Be aware of any fabrics that may be in touch with the skin or the point where the air meets the skin. Any sensations are welcome.

Furthermore, don’t start engaging in thinking about it though – Simply aim to be aware of the sensations here. Continue the scan, moving your attention progressively up one leg and then the other, then to the torso, back, arms, head and neck, focusing on part by part, one at a time.

Step 5 – Whole Body Awareness

This final step is to become aware of the entire body as a connected whole. Bring awareness to your entire physical body and maintain that awareness for a few minutes. Feel the body from within.

You May Also Like To Read: Mindfulness Meditation: What You Need to Know?

“You have to do your homework when you’re considering alternative treatments for pain,” warns Anne Louise Oaklander, MD, PhD, an associate professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School and director of the Nerve Injury Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. “Make sure that you’re trying a treatment that is likely to work in your case.” You can go for a pain relief supplement which could reduce chronic pain by improving joint health. One supplement you can watch out for is Omega XL; a supplement designed to target the root cause of pain. And always discuss any alternative pain treatments you want to try with your regular doctor.

#1. You Could Try Acupuncture

  • Once seen as bizarre, acupuncture is rapidly becoming a mainstream treatment for pain, according to webMD. Studies have found that it works for pain caused by many conditions, including fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, back injuries and sports injuries.
  • Apparently nobody is really sure how it works. It is stated that it could release pain-numbing chemicals in the body. Or it might block the pain signals coming from the nerves.
  • “I think there’s good scientific evidence for acupuncture and I prescribe it,” says F Michael Ferrante, MD, director of the UCLA Pain Management Center in Los Angeles. “The nice thing is that even if it doesn’t work, it doesn’t do any harm.”

#2. Get a Massage

A massage can help reduce stress – we’ll get to that in a minute – and relieve tension. This remedy is being used by people living with all sorts of chronic pain, including back and neck pain. You may use topical analgesics for giving massage on the pain affected area. Check for Soothe Away Review, as this pain reliever might soothe your joints, relief them from pain.

#3. Reduce Stress in Your Life

Stress is said to intensify chronic pain. Negative feelings like depression, anger, anxiety and stress can increase the body’s sensitivity to pain. By learning to take control of stress, you may find some relief from chronic pain.

There are several techniques you can use to help reduce stress and promote relaxation. Listen to soothing, calming music. It will lift your mood. Accordingly, there are even specially designed relaxation tapes or CDs for this – most likely there are apps for this! Mental imagery relaxation (also called guided imagery) is a form of mental escape that can help you feel peaceful. It involves creating calming, peaceful images in your mind.

Chronic Pain Info

#4. Marijuana

Accordingly, marijuana has been shown to have medicinal properties and can help with some types of chronic pain.

“There is strong evidence that marijuana has a modest effect on certain types of nerve pain – particularly pain caused by MS and HIV,” says Steven P. Cohen, MD, associate professor in the division of pain medicine at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore.

You May Also Like To Read: Pros and Cons of Using Medical Marijuana

#5. Cut Back On Alcohol

It is obvious that pain makes sleep difficult. Alcohol can make sleep problems worse and if you’re living with chronic pain, less or no alcohol can improve your quality of sleep.

#6. Exercise

According to webMD, endorphins are brain chemicals that help improve your mood while also blocking pain signals. Exercise has another pain reducing the effect, it strengthens muscles, helping prevent re-injury and further pain. Furthermore, exercise can help keep your weight down, further reducing weight-related pain and fatigue.

#7. Chiropractic Manipulation

Dr. Oaklander tells webMD that while mainstream medicine has traditionally regarded spinal manipulation with suspicion, it’s becoming a more accepted treatment. “I think chiropractic treatment works reasonably well for lower back pain,” she says. “Studies have shown that it’s comparable to other approaches.”

#8. Sip On Some Tea

Studies show that tea may have anti-inflammatory properties. According to one report, lab studies at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland showed EGCG, a substance in green tea may halt arthritis progression by blocking interleukin-1, a pro-inflammatory cell, from damaging cartilage.

#9. Tart Cherry Juice

Findings published in a supplement to the journal of Arthritis and Rheumatism in 2012 reported a study on Gout Management. The study found that cherry intake was associated with a fifty percent lower risk of gout flares over a 48 hour period. According to the study’s co-author Hyon K. Choi, MD, “cherries will continue to provide long-term effects.” These findings are attributed to the positive effects of a special antioxidant – anthocyanins. The reports discussed here had patients consuming more than two servings of eight ounces per day. This equates to almost 65 cherries. It’s no wonder Tart Cherry juice is the main source of so many benefits.

You May Also Like To Add it in Your List: Projoint Plus as it leads to an improved joint health.

Some other Herbal remedies include:

#10. Capsaicin

Topical Capsaicin

It is said to be derived from hot chile peppers, topical capsaicin may be useful for some people in relieving pain. “Capsaicin works by depleting substance P, a compound that conveys the pain sensation from the peripheral to the central nervous system. It takes a couple of days for this to occur,” says David Kiefer, MD assistant clinical professor of medicine at the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine.

#11. Ginger

Though more studies are needed, says Dr. Kiefer, ginger extract may help with joint and muscle pain because it contains phytochemicals, which help stop inflammation. Accordingly, few side effects have been linked to ginger when taken in small does.

#12. Turmeric

This spice has been used to relieve arthritis pain and heartburn, and to reduce inflammation. It’s unclear how turmeric works against pain or inflammation, but its action may be due to a chemical called curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory properties. Turmeric is said to usually be safe to use, but high doses or long-term use may cause indigestion. Also, people with gallbladder disease should avoid using turmeric.

You May Also Like To Read: 7 Home Remedies for Arthritis Joint Pain

In consideration of these herbal remedies – you can always focus on your diet as well. As always, with any new techniques you may try to relieve your chronic pain, it is best to discuss any changes in behavior (or diet) with your doctor. Or else you can opt for a non-prescription pain relief product to purge chronic pain before it aggravates more. Furthermore, check out Schiff Megared Extra Strength Krill Oil which might protect your joints thus preventing the onset of chronic pain.

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