Most chronic pain patients use pills and other types of drugs to relieve pain without paying heed to the side-effects and the risk of getting addiction. They think there is no alternative but they are wrong.
There are a variety of natural herbs and spices that have pain killing properties. These ingredients can reduce inflammation and are categorized as an alternative medicine by the health industry.
Willow bark can ease inflammation because it has the chemical called salicin which is also found in aspirin. It is available in the form of dried herbs, capsules or even liquid supplements. Patients suffering from headaches, lower back pain and osteoarthritis use willow bark to treat their illnesses.
However, it is important to note that willow bark is poisonous to children. It is also not recommended to those who are allergic to aspirin and patients already taking anti-inflammatory or anticoagulant drugs.
Turmeric is an Indian spice which contains the curcumin compound. This compound is an antioxidant which protects the body from tissue and cell damage. Turmeric can also be used to treat indigestion, upset stomachs, psoriasis, ulcers, osteoarthritis and also cancer.
Cloves are available in capsule, oil or powdered form. It is a natural remedy for nausea or the common cold. Cloves also bring relief to those suffering from headaches, toothaches and arthritic inflammation. It can be applied topically to treat fungal infections.
The active ingredient in clove is eugenol which is also used in over-the-counter rubs. Clove oil is used to treat toothaches but applying too much can exacerbate the pain. Those with bleeding disorders or on blood-thinning medication should avoid using it.
The ancient medical practice of the Chinese helps relieve pain by keeping the natural energy pathways of the body balanced. Acupuncturists insert very thin and tiny needles into the skin at the source of pain to treat pain at that particular location.
Acupuncture releases a hormone called serotonin in the brain that makes a person feel relaxed and happy. Acupuncture is used to treat migraines, osteoarthritis and other forms of chronic pain.
Heat and Ice
The most common home remedy for pain is applying heat or ice directly to the area. You may already be aware of this ingredient and it might not surprise you but this is to clarify in which case heat should be used and where ice should be applied.
Ice is used to reduce swelling and inflammation from a strained muscle, ligament or tendon, soon after it is injured. Once the inflammation is gone, heat can be used to treat the stiffness that is associated with usual muscle sprains and strains.
Ice can also be applied on the forehead to treat certain types of headaches.
If the pain is associated with arthritis then heat will be a more effective form of treatment. Heat packs are readily available at drug stores and can be heated up in the microwave for use.