We all have different bodies, different sources of pain, and different personalities. So of course, we won’t end up with identical treatments for our pain conditions. I recommend gently and gradually exploring the many natural pain relief methods out there and seeing what works for you. Here are five natural pain relief methods to explore, for starters:
As a friend’s bodyworker once said, “Use it or lose it.” For you, the movement might be dance, biking, walking, gentle yoga, or, hell, just geting out of bed for two minutes at a stretch. Instead of saying, “I can’t,” becuase you are at this moment unable to do a movement the way you once did in your pre-pain days, ask, “How can I?” and make pain-friendly adaptations. Stay in your comfort zones (never go into your pain zones!), but be at the edge of those zones, so that your body is always moving forward.
2. Anti-inflammatory diet
There is a ton of research on the benefits of an anti-inflammatory diet for natural pain relief– so get yourself edumacated, whether through books or on the mighty Internet. Some of the well-known examples of this diet include salmon, tumeric, and walnuts. James Dillard, MD and Andrew Weil, MD are great integrated medicine specialists to turn to for information on this diet.
3. Guided imagery
Know how millions and millions of dollars are poured into controlling the placebo effect? Yeah. That’s right. Your mind is that powerful. So use it. As David Bresler, PhD says, you can worry yourself sick. And so you can think yourself well. Marty Rossman, MD has outstanding books and CDs offering instruction in and explanation of the method.
4. Energy healing
I know it sounds woo-woo, but think about it: Aren’t there people who make your body cringe when they walk in the room? And to the contrary, aren’t there people who make you feel all warm and fuzzy or giddy with happiness? That’s energy, baby! So find someone with good vibrations and ask them for some hands-on healing or positive, loving thoughts and prayers. Books and DVDs by Adam/DreamHealer are a terrific resource for learning more about energy healing.
As much as possible, try to hoist yourself out of your pain rut (again, without jacking up your pain levels), by pursuing a passion — whether finger-painting in the living room, watching funny movies with a BFF, or heading off to the beach to watch a glorious sunset. Research indicates that the more our lives are filled with stuff that gets our Spirit juice going, the less intensely we experience pain.