More than one in five Australians currently live with persistent pain and reports predict this number will rise to five million by 2050. It may be easy to reach for medication to help ease the pain when flareups happen but there are alternative measures that can be equally as effective. Here, Pharmacist, Nicky Muscillo offers advice on how to better manage this chronic condition beyond prescription medication.
Consider your diet
We all know the impact food has on our bodies and making changes to your diet by incorporating certain foods can help ease the pain. The majority of chronic pain is the result of chronic inflammation, so looking to consume foods that can support your condition and help soothe flare-ups is worth consideration.
Ginger, for example, may help to relieve aching joints from arthritis as well as menstrual cramps, while blueberries may help to fight inflammation to reduce pain. Fruits rich in polyphenols such as strawberries and oranges may provide similar relief.
The Mediterranean diet, which often consists of berries, leafy green vegetables, nuts, legumes, fatty fish, and whole grains can offer nutrients that may also help control inflammation.
Pursue alternative remedies
Taking medication is one option for dealing with pain but there are other methods.
Depending on the degree and kind of pain, anti-inflammatory gels, muscular rubs, massage oils, and liniments can be alternatives for pain management. Heat treatments are another simple, effective way of relieving muscular and joint pain. Patients can use a hot water bottle, heat pack or electric blanket to increase joint mobility and relax muscles.
Alternative treatments such as acupuncture and dietary supplements could also help with certain types of pain.
Ease the pain with a daily exercise routine
Choosing to improve your daily and physical functions is essential for recovery from persistent pain, as it switches your focus both mentally and physically.
Consider a multi-modal approach to your daily routine including gentle exercise, stress management, or physiotherapy can assist with treatment, which has been proven to improve flare-ups more than rest.
Hydrotherapy is a gentle exercise that is great for lower-back pain and osteoarthritis as hot water can help relax muscles, ease joint pain and improve blood flow and circulation. The buoyancy helps increase the movement range of your joints.
Visit a healthcare professional for a management plan
Pain is the body’s way of saying something is wrong, which means it’s important to seek advice from a healthcare professional, especially prior to beginning any kind of self-treatment.
Discount Drug Stores are running pain management clinics until March 31, which are designed to help those experiencing persistent pain by providing expert advice to patients on how to manage their symptoms and potentially treat the underlying cause.
These one-on-one consultations provide customers with a pain management care plan to help identify its cause based on the type of pain exhibited and the best possible way to manage their symptoms beyond prescribing medication or an ointment.
For more information on DDS’ clinics, please visit www.discountdrugstores.com.au
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