Chronic pain is one of the most common health issues in America, affecting more than 50 million people.
Chronic pain can lead to depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder. With chronic pain, your body continuously sends stress signals to the brain, which not only heightens the pain itself, but also the perceived level of stress.
Most chronic pain treatments, initially, will be medication based, but the natural treatments listed below below can also help—either in addition to a pharmacological solution, or as a stand-alone pain treatment:
Acupuncture. Acupuncture is a non-surgical method of therapy treatment. Needles are inserted into acupuncture points, where the body will release endorphins. The endorphins relieve pain, decrease inflammation, increase range of motion, and support the immune system. This is a great way to alleviate any aches and pains you may have.
Meditation. In one study, 109 patients suffering from chronic pain participated in a mindfulness class. Compared to those who did not take a class, those who participated in the class reported more relief from pain, with lower anxiety and depression. Meditation involves practicing mindfulness and breathing, focusing on living in the moment.
Massage Therapy. If you have chronic pain in your body, a good massage can give you some much needed relief. Massage promotes blood circulation, relieves stress, reduces pain, and shortens recovery time if you have any muscle tension. Massage promotes proper circulation throughout the body, which means a quicker removal of the waste that builds up in the muscles. When toxins build up, they can become painful trigger points, which is a painful and dysfunctional area of muscle tissue.
Reiki. Reiki is a touch therapy that helps with reducing stress, and promotes relaxation by balancing the energy levels in a person’s body. The Reiki practioner holds his or her hands over the receiver to give the healing energy that helps them relax. Reiki aids in the injury healing process, and it can loosen tightness or pain in the body. Reiki is offered at about 60 major hospitals across the country, and reiki education is offered at about 800 hospitals.
Turmeric. Curcuma, the ingredient in the spice turmeric, has noticeable pain-relieving effects. In a study on the treatment of knee osteoarthritis, it showed that curcuma extract is effective for pain relief management when a patient uses it for four weeks or longer.
Ginger. Ginger is a natural root that is also a pain reliever with anti-inflammatory properties. A 2015 study showed that those who took 2 grams of ginger per day experienced a reduction in pain while resistance training and running, compared to those who did not use the supplement.
Those are just some examples of natural remedies for chronic pain—if nothing else works, something more potent might be necessary, such as medications or ketamine infusions. Ketamine infusions offer relief from chronic pain symptoms, sometimes for as long as 11-months at a time, and can treat the symptoms of anxiety and depression in as few as 1-2 infusions. Reach out to our Chicagoland ketamine clinic to see if you are a good candidate for ketamine infusions.