Natural Pain Management (2)

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In the last episode I underscored how pain can snatch one’s joy and vitality. Sometimes extreme pain can lead to serious depression and loss of vigour.
Normally doctors recognise two types of pain: acute and chronic. Acute pain comes on suddenly, typically subsides with time and is usually alleviated with common pain relievers. Example of acute pain include headache, or pain from an injury. On the other hand, chronic pain may begin as acute pain, but it lasts much longer-months or even years, and often cannot be relieved using standard therapies.
Over the years, medical practioners have discovered that conventional drugs do not bring final relief to pain, but rather a combination of both conventional and alternative therapies can tackle the problem more effectively.
Alternative therapies include herbs, yoga and acupuncture. One of the common pain ailment is osteoarthritis and this disease can be deadly when not treated early or tackled head on.
Normally, the disease affects the cartilage- the tough, rubbery water filled substance that caps the ends of the bones within a joint, allowing them to slide easily across each other during movement.
The hallmark osteoarthritis is joint pain, usually a deep ache that originates in the joints core. Other symptoms include joint stiffness; limited range of motion; warmth swelling and tenderness around the joint and cracking. Some people develop bony growths at the end of the fingers.
The standard treatment for osteoarthritis pain relieving medication, but hot and cold packs, proper body alignment, exercise and weight loss helps.
Apart from osteoarthritis there are muscular pain, toothaches, headache, backache and a host of other pains. Fortunately, herbs have been helpful in managing all kinds of pains. Among the top herbs are ginger, clove, turmeric, red pepper, willow tree bark and Evening Primrose and Lavender.
Other pain killing herbs are Sunflower seeds, Peppermint, Eucalyptus, and Rosemary. Peppermint is an active constituent in peppermint and has anaesthetic effects in one study, scientists asked 32 people who had headaches to massage tincture of peppermint oil on their temples. This had significant pain relieving effect.
Sunflower seeds according to James Duke, a notable naturalist is the best source of phenylalanine, a chemical involved in pain control.
Studies suggest that phenylalanine helps reduce pain by inhibiting the breakdown of enkephalins, chemicals involved in pain perception.
Turmeric is usually indicated that the curcumin in turmeric has anti inflammatory effects, including a significant beneficial effect in relieving rheumatoid arthritis. But it makes more than a shake of the spice to gain the benefit.
Red pepper otherwise known as “Capsicum” whether the bell type or cayenne pepper are natural pain killers. They contain chemicals salicylates equivalent to aspirin. In fact red pepper was once ranked as the best food- grade source salicylates, although a new study has downgraded it considerably.
Cloves are typically used for toothaches, but its oil are very effective for dental cures. Applying clove oil in a tooth hole helps to reduce pain quickly. In Germany, Commission E, the group that advises government on herbal medicine endorsed clove for painful tooth treatment.