Pain Medication

Alternatives to Pain Medication

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Dealing with ongoing pain can be very difficult, especially if you have been taking medication that is no longer working or if you are keen to avoid relying on over-the-counter or prescription drugs. So, is there a way to manage pain without medication?

Although it is often easy to just pop a pill for pain, there have been many incidences of people becoming hooked on prescription drugs such as opioids, especially when the medication is not actually doing anything to address the cause of the pain in the first place. Without finding the root cause of the pain, it is unlikely to go away no matter how much medication is taken.

How Pain Clinics Can Help

Doctors often refer people to pain clinics such as KindlyMD, where a whole-person approach to treatment is taken. If you don’t want to use medication for your pain, the doctors at these clinics will work with you to create a plan that utilizes other types of treatment.

Counselling and behavioral therapies are often greatly beneficial for helping individuals manage their chronic pain. For example, health and wellness coaching can help to change a person’s mindset when it comes to pain. Some will even benefit from therapies such as music or sound therapy.

Pain management doctors will work to identify the cause of the pain and will run a series of tests. In some cases, the chronic pain could be caused by excess weight or poor posture. In these cases, the recommended treatment might include physical therapy or changes to diet and lifestyle. The patient might be given nutritional education that will help with diet changes, and an exercise plan may also be provided to encourage increased physical activity, which can be hugely beneficial. Although increasing exercise might not seem very attractive to those dealing with pain, it can have a massive positive impact.

You might also be advised to try electro therapy at a pain clinic. This is a procedure where you will be attached to a transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) machine. This machine delivers electrical currents through soft pads attached to different parts of the body. It is a pain-free method that is said to disrupt pain signals. Some clinics will provide patients with a TENS machine to take home.

What Can You Do at Home?

If you are trying to deal with ongoing pain at home and are hoping to avoid medication, there are things that can be done. If you are overweight, your pain may be caused by extra pressure on bones and joints such as the hip, knee, or lower back. Losing some weight can reduce this pressure and help to ease the pain you are feeling.

Increasing exercise is another way to relieve pain. When you exercise, your brain will release feel-good chemicals known as endorphins. These endorphins will boost mood and make you feel better. And the more you exercise, the less stiff your joints and bones will be, which should contribute to decreasing your pain.

If your pain has been caused as a direct result of an injury, using the RICE (rest, ice, compress, elevate) method should offer some relief. Alternating cold and hot on an injury for periods of no more than twenty minutes at a time will help to reduce swelling and ease pain.

Relaxation therapies are also recommended. This might include meditation or breath work, both of which can help you to relax and reduce tension in muscles (which can often cause pain).

To conclude, there are many reasons why people would prefer not to rely on medication for their pain. The good news is that there are lots of other treatments that can be just as effective.

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