Blog#45 Pain Is Not a Lifestyle
Almost everyone suffers from chronic physical pain at some time; some people will have chronic pain from long periods of time, and a few will experience it for most of their lives. Sometimes, they are prescribed medications to manage their pain. Many of these medications have serious long-term side-effects, and are addictive. Life does not have to be that way; there are many ways pain can be reduced or eliminated without harm or addiction. I offer many of these ways in my practice. Listed below are several highly effective and safe holistic approaches to reducing or eliminating pain.
1. Improved nutrition. Several types of foods tend to be pro-inflammatory, which means, among other things, that their consumption will tend to increase pain level and duration. Gluten, found in several types of grains, especially wheat, barley, and rye, is pro-inflammatory. In addition, certain foods feed yeast and long-term, high consumption can result in increased abdominal discomfort and bloating as well as eventual problems such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, joint pain, and a compromised immune system. Some studies have shown that frequent consumption of wheat, especially white flour and white and brown sugar, as well as some other sweeteners, such as high fructose corn syrup, pasteurized honey, and some artificial sweeteners, especially aspartame, saccharin, and splenda can result in the above-mentioned health issues as well as blood sugar imbalances. Also, processed foods, such as packaged cereals, breads, pastas, and especially processed meats, can exacerbate arthritic problems and other health issues.
2. Appropriate stretching and strengthening exercises. Exercise helps improve blood and lymph circulation, improve brain function, elevate the spirit, calm the mind, increase energy level, stabilize the musculoskeletal system, and strengthen the immune system. Too much overly demanding exercise can be draining or even lead to injury, so it is important for each person to find and adhere to the appropriate amount and intensity of exercise for them. Walking, yoga, tai chi, chi gong and Pilates are all exercise types that can be appropriate.
3. Using the mind calmly and effectively. Hypnosis, self-hypnosis, and meditation can all be helpful. Through hypnosis and self-hypnosis (all hypnosis is really self-hypnosis) pain can be reduced or eliminated. This is a relatively simple process taught by a hypnotist. Pain should not changed or eliminated until a thorough investigation is made to find the source of the pain, since in some cases, pain must be addressed physically and not erased by the mind; otherwise, more serious problems may arise. Self-hypnosis and meditation can also be used to relax with the pain so that it is not so distressing.
4. Energy work such as acupuncture. Acupuncture is well known for its ability to relieve pain. It is sometimes used as anesthesia for surgery in China and also in the U.S. and other countries. Although a skillful acupuncturist can often reduce or eliminate pain with a treatment, the relief may be short term unless the root of the pain is found and addressed. Acupuncture, along with other holistic approaches, such as improved nutrition, herbal therapy, chiropractic adjusting, exercise, massage, and meditation can help eliminate the root problem, and this way, the pain will not recur.
I credit one of my chiropractic and acupuncture teachers, Michael S. Greene, of Lee’s Summit, MO with the phrase “pain is not a lifestyle”.
This blog’s offer: contact me for a free 20 minute consultation about what kind of holistic therapy would be appropriate to reduce or eliminate your pain.
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