chronic pain

Options for Natural Pain Relief

Published on November 21, 2019 by First Responder Wellness

Many people live with chronic pain for a variety of reasons or are accustomed to intense pain due to repeated surgeries or injuries. Often, individuals with pain that disrupts their quality of life are prescribed opioid pain medications to manage their symptoms. Unfortunately, opioids are highly addictive and have been known to lead to addiction. Even the most well-intentioned of users can find themselves addicted, adding to the problem rather than remedying it. For individuals who addicted to prescription pain medications, the prospect of seeking treatment and living sober can be very stressful. This stress is worsened by anxiety over managing their pain without drugs. The good news is that natural pain relief is a good and effective option for those who wish to try alternative methods. There are several ways to go about relieving pain through natural means, and effectiveness will vary between methods and individuals. It is vital to keep an open mind when considering natural methods of pain relief. Remember that managing pain without addictive drugs is not only possible but may lead to a happier and more pain-free life.  

Meditation

For those unfamiliar with meditation, it is easy to feel skeptical of this method of pain relief. However, research continues to confirm the many widespread benefits of meditation and mindfulness practices. People have found meditation to decrease anxiety and depression, provide pain relief, and improve mental health. People have been using meditation to manage pain for centuries. There is even a meditation technique for childbirth that can significantly reduce or even eliminate labor pain. Additionally, meditation is encouraged among people in addiction treatment because it can positively affect mental health and reduce cravings for substances. You may begin practicing meditation for pain relief on your own or seek out the advice of an expert. Experts can guide you towards specific techniques that provide the greatest benefit for your unique circumstances.

Exercise

For many people who struggle with moderate to severe chronic pain, working out may be the last thing on their minds. However, research has shown that regular exercise relieves pain in several ways. Working out increases circulation and releases endorphins that increase your natural pain threshold. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you need to risk harming your body or aggravating an existing injury. You don’t have to push yourself to the limit in the gym every day. However, merely incorporating daily activities such as walking or swimming can make a huge difference in your pain. Research has shown that combining several different types of exercise seems to have the most pain-relieving potential for most people. Choosing a regimen that combines cardio exercise with strength training may be the best route for natural pain relief.

Yoga

Yoga is fantastic for natural pain relief because it combines the power and effectiveness of both mindfulness and exercise. Yoga is an ancient practice that has gained popularity over the past few decades for its ability to tone the body, heal injuries, and improve mental health. Yoga is also great for those in addiction recovery because it helps promote overall wellbeing and connect people with their spirituality. There are many different types of yoga, and it is vital to choose a style that feels best in your body and mind. With careful consideration, yoga can help you to feel worked out while also promoting peace of mind. Many addiction recovery programs offer yoga to get you started in the practice and finding a yoga studio where you feel comfortable can help you stay committed and enjoy the long-term benefits of this powerful technique. 

Massage Therapy

Many people underestimate the power of human touch, but receiving regular massages from a qualified massage therapist can have a profound effect on pain management. Trained professionals know how to provide healing pressure to relieve muscle and joint pain, and can even help you to sleep better at night. Massage therapy is especially useful for back pain, neck pain, headaches, and fibromyalgia. It is important to choose a licensed massage therapist, and it may even be worth looking for someone who specializes in your specific condition. Additionally, be sure to communicate with your massage therapist often. Let them know what feels right and what causes you pain during your sessions. 

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese technique used for pain relief. It is highly effective for individuals who suffer from headaches, back and neck pain, and arthritis. Acupuncture works by using very thin needles to stimulate specific nerves in the body. This pressure signals the brain to release beta-endorphins, which are known to relieve pain naturally. Certain types of pain seem to respond better to acupuncture than others. Still, many people also report mental health benefits to acupuncture therapy.  

Chronic pain can be stressful and depressing at times, but addiction to pain medication only exacerbates the problem. If you have become addicted to opioid pain relievers, now is the time to seek treatment and explore alternative methods of relief. The First Responders Treatment Program at Simple Recovery uses trauma-informed strategies to cater to the unique needs of law enforcement, firefighters, paramedics, and other first responders with substance use disorders and co-occurring mental illnesses. We recognize that first responders encounter job-specific barriers and obstacles that come with the culture of their careers. Existing stigmas may make seeking help for addiction and mental health issues especially tricky. Addiction does not have to mean the end of your career. Nor do you have to resign yourself to a lifetime of struggling with your health and relationships.

At Simple Recovery, we take a holistic approach to treatment and addressing the underlying causes of addiction. This approach makes it possible for first responders to regain control of every aspect of their wellbeing. First responders dedicate their lives to protecting their community. At Simple Recovery’s First Responder Treatment Program, we dedicate our time to helping these compassionate individuals find a path to lasting sobriety and mental wellness. If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, call us now at 888-743-0490