Natural Ways to Relieve Pain

For those who suffer from pain, practicing one or more of these natural pain relieving methods may complement Dr. Cherry's Duramet formulation.

In Controlling Your Pain, Dr. Cherry discusses the most common and effective natural ingredients being used against pain, which have been combined into the Pathway to Healing Duramet formulation.

Using a specialized nutritional supplement such as Duramet is a powerful weapon in the fight against pain, and there are other things you can do to enhance or add to your arsenal. Here are some natural techniques you can try:

Prayer

The Bible's greatest health secret is actually the effective weapon of prayer. Disease and pain can bring with it great despair, but as a Christian, you need never lose hope. You should always turn to the almighty God, the One who created your body and who knows how to fix it. This powerful, loving God is on your side, and when you turn to Him, He will always be with you and give you the answer to your deepest needs.

Read Dr. Cherry's 5 Steps to Pray for Your Healing for guidance on praying for healing.

Exercise

Exercising may not be the first thing that comes to mind for dealing with chronic pain, but physical activity can actually decrease pain. Studies show that exercise releases endorphins, which are natural pain-relieving chemicals in your brain.

The type of exercise you should do will depend on the condition, and can be tailored to your limitations by a physical therapist. In general, the more active you are and the more you use your muscles, the better the outcome, but pace yourself and be sure not to overdo it. (It's fine to cut back on your exercise during a flare-up of your pain, but it's important to resume your exercise routine as soon as you feel better.)

Ice and Heat

Heat and cold can both be quite helpful for musculoskeletal conditions – use the one that works best for you.

Ice is a great way to temporarily relieve pain associated with swelling; ice lessens the blood flow to the injury by constricting blood vessels. Cold also lessens pain sensations by numbing the affected area, and some people find that cold relieves pain faster than heat. Cold can be applied with ice packs, a bag of frozen peas, or an iced washcloth.

Heat often relieves sore muscles, and has been shown to deactivate pain in a manner similar to painkillers. At temperatures over 100 degrees, the body's heat receptors are turned on, which block the pain receptors from sending their chemical messages.

Heating pads are one of the most common ways to deliver heat (remember not to lie directly on it). Moist heat, which is often more effective than dry heat, can be applied with a warm towel or a soak in the tub. Don't combine heat with pain relieving ointments, such as mentholated rubs and aspirin creams.

Always place a towel between the cold or heat and the skin. Apply heat or cold therapy for up to 15 minutes, then let the area to return to normal body temperature before reapplying. Some people obtain added relief by alternating heat and ice, while others use heat before exercising and ice after.

Sleep

Poor sleep and pain often make a vicious circle: Chronic pain conditions are more likely to lead to persistent sleep disturbances, and chronic sleep deprivation increases the incidence of chronic pain. In addition, some pain medications affect the quality of sleep. Sleep is restorative and healing, and can reduce chronic pain. In fact, an increase short-wave sleep produced greater pain relief than one would receive from a large dose of ibuprofen!

See Dr. Cherry's Guidelines for Better Sleep for tips on how to achieve better sleep.

Massage or Pressure

Massage therapy can provide pain relief, reduce swelling and inflammation, and soothe sore and stiff muscles by increased blood circulation to the muscles. While there are many different massage styles, slow, steady, circular motions appear to be most effective for pain relief. Some people find brushing or stroking lightly more comforting than deep massage. Depending upon where your pain is located, you may massage over or near the area yourself with your hand. On the other hand, having someone give you a foot rub, back rub, or hand rub can be very relaxing and may relieve pain.

Alternatively, firm pressure can be applied over or near your pain. You may also try to find "trigger points," or small areas under the skin that are especially sensitive and trigger pain. Apply pressure with the entire hand, the heel of the hand, the fingertip or the knuckle, or the ball of the thumb. You can try it for about 10 seconds to various areas to see if it helps, and if so, continue the pressure for up to one minute. This may relieve the pain for several minutes to several hours after the pressure is released.

Relaxation and Guided Imagery

Relaxation relieves pain or keeps it from getting worse by reducing tension in the muscles. It can help you fall asleep, give you more energy, make you less tired, reduce your anxiety, and make other pain relief methods work better.

Progressive muscle relaxation is a technique that may be effective for both muscle spasm pain and stress reduction. It involves focusing your attention on each muscle group until it feels heavy and relaxed, usually beginning with the feet and gradually progressing upward.

Guided imagery, which often accompanies relaxation techniques, involves using your imagination to create mental pictures or situations. Imagery is like a deliberate daydream that uses all of your senses - sight, touch, hearing, smell, and taste. Some people imagine the physical area that is causing the pain, and then visualize scenarios such as "letting the pain go." Others mentally escape to a favorite, relaxing place, such as the beach or a mountain cabin. Music, nature sounds, and instructional tapes make it easier for beginners to escape to a mental paradise.

Animals

Many recent studies have demonstrated that holding, stroking or caring for animals may result in pain relief. In one study, people who received pet therapy while recovering from total joint replacement surgery required 50 percent less pain medication than those not receiving pet therapy.

Some scientists believe that distraction is what is at work – that caring for another being removes the self focus and sends the pain to the back of the mind. Others argue that handling animals may trigger natural endorphins in the brain. Either way, pet therapy appears to be a comforting way to bring about possible relief.

Music

New research indicates that soothing music can also relieve pain. The theory is that much like animal therapy, the sound of soothing instruments can evoke memories of happier times which may cause the release of endorphins to ease the pain.

Additional Nutrients

In addition to the herbs and nutrients found in Duramet, other nutrients may help with pain relief:
• Fish Oil and omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to reduce inflammation, which can help lessen pain from inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, IBS and fibromyalgia.
• Vitamin D may reduce chronic pain associated with headaches, arthritis and fibromyalgia.

Try one, more, or any combination of these natural methods in your search for the relief of pain and the pathway to your healing.

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