Pain, pain go away – and don’t come back another day …

Pain is your body’s way of telling you that something is wrong. It’s often caused by swelling of tissue, which creates pressure on nerves and leads to discomfort. Pain is a useful mechanism to alert you to a problem, and stops you from damaging your body further. It should therefore always be taken seriously.

Pain can affect many areas of the body, but particularly the lower back, head, neck, joints and legs. It can result from injuries and arthritis, and can also manifest itself in forms such as headache or period pain.
Before trying any pain relief approach, it’s important to talk to your doctor. Some therapies may not be safe or appropriate for you, even if they are of the non-pharmaceutical kind. Various factors need to be considered before undergoing treatment, including your medical condition and history.
The keystone to any treatment is a diagnosis, a logical conclusion based on information obtained from the chief complaint, the patient’s history and the physical examination. Every attempt should be made to diagnose the precise anatomical and pathological cause of the presenting problem.

‘Each illness has its cause, and the cause cannot be removed by any medication’ (Hippocrates)

PAIN RELIEF WITH PHYSICAL THERAPY
Osteopathy, physiotherapy and chiropractic are statutorily recognised physical therapies in South Africa. Chiropractors and osteopaths are both medical professionals who treat patients with a focus on the musculoskeletal system.

One of the main purposes of osteopathy is pain relief. Osteopathy helps people of all ages who suffer from pain, tackling complaints ranging from sports- and work-related injuries to arthritis and sciatica. The osteopath’s role is to alleviate pain and improve the patient’s mobility in order to make life more comfortable.

PAIN RELIEF WITH STRESS MANAGEMENT
Stress is a major psychological factor that can intensify the perception of pain. When people are distressed their muscles tend to become tense, which may increase pain in already tender tissues. On an emotional level, the pressure may amplify perception of pain. Emotional arousal or stress may lead you to interpret your situation as more difficult than it is, and you may avoid certain types of activities because you’re afraid they are going to make your pain worse.

If it is not possible to change the source of tension, try distracting yourself with enjoyable activities such as spending time with friends, watching a movie or listening to music. Participating in something pleasurable may shift focus away from pain.
Another strategy is to unwind. Relaxation techniques include deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, meditation, visualisation and tai chi. These practices have been proven to be effective.

PAIN RELIEF WITH EXERCISE
Many people in pain avoid exercise because movement hurts too much. Yet inactivity may actually worsen the condition. The human body was designed to be in motion no matter what state of health it’s in. If you let your body become inactive, you will allow it to degenerate.

‘Nothing causes as much damage to our body as long physical inactivity’ (Aristotle)

Muscle degeneration can lead to other problems such as diminishing bone density, depression and a weakened heart. In contrast, regular exercise will help keep joints flexible and strong, and better able to deal with arthritic pain. Plus, physical activity promotes the release of mood-enhancing chemicals in the body that can help diminish the perception of pain.
To decrease pain and prevent further injury, it is important to apply appropriate effort in proper form. Not all exercises are right for everyone. If one type of exercise does not work for you, there are always other options. Before starting a fitness programme, consult with your doctor and physical therapist.

PAIN RELIEF WITH DIET
Losing weight can help reduce the risk of pain. If you’re overweight and de-conditioned, your joints take increased mechanical strain because of the increased kilos your joints have to carry.
Follow a healthy, balanced diet. Try to eat organically produced foods and avoid processed foods, wheat, milk and soy. If your diet is too acidic it is likely to increase your pain, so consult a nutritionist to find out how you can balance your body’s ph through diet.

LIVE A HEALTHY LIFE
The best strategy for pain relief involves appropriate physical therapy, good posture, appropriate exercise, eating properly, getting enough sleep, and managing stress.

Source – Natural Medicine