Natural Alternatives to Painkillers

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Natural Alternatives to Painkillers

 A painkiller is a drug that reduces or stops physical pain. They are efficient and helpful for short-term use. Prolonged use leaves scars on the abdomen as the medicine localizes on internal tissue.

Long-term use can cause an ulcer and bleed on an affected portion or even death due to severe aberration if there is not fast treatment. Long time use of pain relievers also causes malfunction of the kidney, liver and immune system.     Reliance on painkillers could also snowball into an addiction.  Medical staff should inform their patients to take painkillers only when it is essential and try natural alternatives.

These natural pain-relieving alternatives are worth a try.

Reduce inflammatory

Reducing the inflammation helps to relieve or stop pain as it is the cause. Inflammation contributes too many forms of chronic pain. A simple way of addressing inflammations is to apply ice or cold pack to the area of pain regularly. Cold therapy (cryotherapy) reduces the flow of blood to the damaged area which reduces the swelling and inflammation that is causing the pain, especially around a tendon or joint. Ice temporarily reduces nerve activity and by extension pain by slowing nerve impulses which interrupts signals of distress that start in the affected area.

Eating a healthy diet

It is essential to take an appropriate diet for pain relief as food largely influences the pain levels. An excellent step to act on pain by diet is to avoid foods with a high content of arachidonic acid because it causes inflammation.  Foods such as red meat, eggs, dairy and other animal fats produce inflammation or pain by releasing various inflammatory biologically active substances.

 It is safer to take foods with high content of omega 3 fatty acids because they help in reducing inflammation and even chronic pain such as that occurs due to arthritis or other related conditions.  Fish, nuts, whole grains, green leafy vegetables and fruits such as avocados are a rich source of Omega 3 Fatty acids.  Fish oils supplements are also an excellent source of Omega 3 Fatty acids.


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Massage therapy

Massage therapy promotes relaxation and helps in lessening body's perception of pain. An effective therapeutic massage spurs blood flow helping to nourish and heal soft tissues throughout the body.  Massage helps to release the body's natural pain relievers, the endorphins. The type of massage and quantity to relieve pain is not definite hence it is essential to try different approaches and determine the method that works in the best way.

Heat therapy

Applying a form of heat on a painful area helps in easing the pain.  Some of the ways for heat application is to use a hot water bottle, hot bath, electric heating pad or a pad heated in a microwave.  Heat therapy has a double benefit. The first benefit is to suppress the pain signals. It also promotes healing by increasing flow of nutrients and oxygen to the damaged area.  To get more success from heat therapy, combine it with essential oils.

Use essential oils

 Essential oils have an analgesic effect and using them when in pain in therapeutic.  One way is to add several drops of essential oils to massage oil for use during a therapeutic massage. Other people prefer to use aromatherapy (inhaling) as their way of deriving the benefits. Rosemary, lavender and peppermint oil are some of the several oils that produce an analgesic effect.

Cardio exercise

An activity that increases sustained blood pumping for a period helps to release endorphins, the natural pain relievers that the body produces. Endorphins bind the opioid receptors in the brain to block pain signals in the same way as opioid pain medications like morphine or oxycodone. Cardiological workouts also promote the production of more endorphins to produce feelings of pleasure that diverts the mind from lingering on the pain.

De-stressing

Chronic stress causes inflammation in the body which can lead to pain or increase existing pain.   Extreme and constant pain can also contribute to stress hence it is essential to relieve current anxiety and prevent more. Relaxation exercises such as tai-chi, meditation and breathing exercises help to reduce pain as well as stress.

 It is essential that primary healthcare providers help their patients who constantly use painkillers to relieve chronic pain in picking suitable natural alternatives that do not cause side effects or dependence.


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