Some people don’t understand what it means to have chronic pain. Just saying the sentence can make a person who does know teary-eyed because it’s the worst feeling in all the world. Luckily, there are alternative options to lessen the suffering. After much effort, chiropractic spinal adjustments, and self-care, I have found the top 7 ways to make the days okay instead of a terrible list of swear words.
Best DYI Pain Management Techniques
You don’t have to be in as much pain as you are. Be careful and kind to yourself. Do your research and find out ways to alleviate chronic pain naturally and without surgery.
1. Hot & Cold Therapy
The first day of my injury, a sprained neck aka whiplash, a doctor told me to avoid heat (excluding baths & saunas) and only use ice until swelling had subsided. After the two weeks, I was to switch to a mixture of ice and heat therapy. It works. Invest in a heating pad and use it any time you wish you could have a bath but cannot for whatever reason. I use mine every day and switch between the ice pack and the heat. While shopping for groceries, I sometimes grab a cold beverage and hold it on my neck while I shop (but of course I buy the drink I was using to soothe the pain).
2. Take A Bath Whenever Possible
Soak in an herbal bath mixed with good old fashion Epsom salt. I buy 8 lbs. at a time and use a lot every month. For a full bath use two cups of Epsom salt and add one or more of these essential oils:
- White Birch Bark
3. Make Sleep A Priority
This is a good time to stop drinking coffee. Start
taking melatonin or drinking valerian root tea (found in most nighttime teas)
before bed and you will sleep better and longer. Try to get 8+ hours every
night, and you’ll wake up with more energy to get through the day.
4. Reduce Stress: Schedule & Pace Yourself
Be honest with the people around you, such as your
family, co-workers, and employer. When you’re open about your problems, you
automatically lower your stress level because people will have a better
understanding of what you can and cannot do. Nothing is more annoying then
continuously being asked to do something that always puts you in more pain.
Sometimes you have to refuse, and it’s better if the person knows why you have
to say no.
5. Stretching & Light Exercise
My chiropractor encouraged me to stay active and not lay down, but also to be gentle with exercising. A neck injury may require different stretches than a shoulder or knee injury. It’s crucial to learn stretching techniques that can target your pains specifically. Stretch whenever you can and never stay in one sitting or standing position for too long. If you work at a desk, then switch between sitting and standing and stretch before, during, and after work.
6. Eat An Anti-inflammatory Diet
You’ll be surprised at how fast your body will respond to a healthy diet of vegetables and essential vitamins. It’s heartbreaking when a chronic pain sufferer learns that eating bread, dairy, beef, nightshades, sugar, and alcohol can all be a factor in what’s increasing pain, but it’s true. You don’t have to be a vegan, but eating more fruits and vegetables will help lower your pain, this I swear is true.
7. Find An Advanced CBP Doctor
Last and perhaps most important is if your primary doctor has suggested the big “S” word, surgery, then I highly recommend you look for a specific type of chiropractor known as an Advanced Chiropractic Biophysics (CBP) practitioner. Utilizing science-based diagnoses and natural treatment techniques, a CBP chiropractor can help you avoid surgery and relieve daily pain enough that sometimes makes the worst of the symptoms go away for good.
Ignoring Pain Will Make Matters Worse
Take the painkillers when it’s awful because trying to bite down and stay in pain can make matters worse. When the medications aren’t good enough remember to incorporate these activities into your day, and you’ll find yourself taking fewer pain medications and able to return to the hobbies you love.