Pain is something everyone goes through. Whether it’s a bike accident as a child or a workplace injury in our 30’s, we all experience pain in our lives.
Even though there are many different sources of pain, we often fall into the trap that there is only one solution–medication. And while it’s absolutely true that many ordinary pains can be effectively treated with an over-the-counter product, we must be very careful not to fall into the trap of throwing medicine at everything.
Ironically, the most serious pains are the ones that might be the best candidates for skipping the medication and taking a different approach. Remember that pain isn’t just an inconvenience. It’s a signal from the body that something isn’t right. If we mask that signal, we may allow more damage to occur and end up on a never-ending road of injury and re-injury.
Disadvantages of Pain Medication
Medication can certainly be an effective stop-gap action in certain situations, but it is rarely the definitive answer to pain. Powerful painkillers can be very expensive, especially to those who are uninsured or underinsured. Given that people with serious pain issues may already be unable to work, they certainly don’t need to add to the cost.
Of course, another major issue is addiction. Many patients at outpatient drug rehabs have severe addictions to pain medication that began with simple injuries that were treated with unnecessarily strong medications. And even people who use opioids appropriately can be a target for burglaries or robberies if addicts find out they have the drugs.
Using Natural Options
One of the most underappreciated options for medical care today is natural options. People make the mistake of assuming that these therapies are not effective and represent more of a placebo treatment than a true intervention.
They assume incorrectly. Many different common conditions from urinary tract infections to various chronic pain conditions can be effectively treated with natural products derived from herbs, plants, roots, and countless other sources. If you still have doubts, you should know that many of the medications we use today were developed from ingredients extracted from natural cures.
Seeking Better Treatment
The most obvious solution to pain is to eliminate its underlying source. You may think you have already done that, but there could still be options on the table for you.
Remember that not every patient gets the perfect cure from the first doctor they see, or even the second or third. Many injuries and illnesses are incredibly complex, and if your practitioner’s approach is too one-dimensional, he or she may not be addressing every part of your problem.
Don’t be afraid to do some research. Seek out other doctors. Network online. Try to find others who have been through your particular condition and identify the options they have used.
Using Kinetic Options
The most common cause of pain is movement, but sometimes movement can actually be the cure. For decades, patients who underwent joint replacements were kept on bed rest for a prolonged period, but doctors eventually discovered that the patients developed better range of motion and better results if they were up and walking on those new joints as soon as they came out of surgical recovery.
That’s not to say that you should jump up and do calisthenics for your aching back, but there are options for improving your pain situation that utilize planned, prescribed movement. Physical therapy, yoga, and even simple aerobics can provide sustained relief for conditions such as sciatic, arthritis, and gout. Just be sure to consult a doctor before beginning any such program.
Pain is an unpleasant experience that we all want to avoid. Fortunately, there are ways to do that without using dangerous, expensive prescription drugs.