If you’re one of the millions of Americans suffering from chronic pain on a daily basis, then you probably exert a lot of time and energy searching for relief. And while there might not be a way to totally eliminate your pain, there are plenty of ways to reduce symptoms and enjoy some relief.
Try These Chronic Pain Relief Tips
Chronic pain is described as pain that lasts for longer than three months. This pain can be chronic in the sense that it’s always there, or it may come and go intermittently.
“Chronic pain can interfere with your daily activities, such as working, having a social life and taking care of yourself or others,” Cleveland Clinic explains. “It can lead to depression, anxiety and trouble sleeping, which can make your pain worse. This response creates a cycle that’s difficult to break.”
According to the CDC, 20.4 percent of adults have chronic pain, while 7.4 percent have chronic pain severe enough to keep them from participating in normal work and life activities. The risk for chronic pain is shown to increase with age and peaks in individuals 65 years of age and older.
If you’re experiencing chronic pain, you should always see a doctor and get to the root of the problem. However, once you’ve done this, you should look for additional methods of relief.
1. Exercise Daily
Exercise is one of the best antidotes for chronic pain. It doesn’t have to be intense exercise – simple activities like walking, jogging, water aerobics, or yoga can be highly beneficial.
When you exercise, your brain releases pain-killing endorphins into the body. At the same time, circulation increases, which feeds different parts of the body the vitamins and nutrients they need. Over time, regular exercise also helps you keep your weight down, which offers its own unique benefits.
2. Improve Your Diet
We all know that what we eat can impact how we feel physically, but did you know that it can also impact your overall stress levels? Thankfully, it doesn’t have to. If you’re smart about your diet, you can actually use it to tame your stress level (rather than make it worse) and avoid exacerbating your chronic pain symptoms.
Refined carbs, sugar, and artificial ingredients are known to spike blood sugar and then cause it to crash. This increases stress and anxiety, while also putting a strain on the digestive system. Healthy fats, vitamins, and nutrients have the opposite effect. Foods like eggs, avocados, and walnuts stabilize the brain, regulate mood, improve energy, and increase your pain tolerance.
3. Try Using CBD
Have you ever tried CBD? Believe it or not, one of the primary benefits of CBD is chronic pain relief. You can take CBD in a number of forms, including orally and topically. If your chronic pain is in the pelvic region, you might try CBD suppositories, which can provide even more immediate relief.
4. Manage Your Weight
Did you know that your weight could actually be one of the primary contributing factors in your chronic pain? (This is especially true if your pain is joint-related.)
“Excess weight can cause more pressure on the weight-bearing joints and increase pain. Plus, adipose tissue (a.k.a.: fat) sends out chemical signals that increase inflammation,” Arthritis.org mentions. “Being overweight is bad for your overall health, as it increases your chances for heart disease, diabetes and even some cancers.”
There’s nothing magical or mysterious about managing your weight – it takes discipline and work. Eat a diet full of fresh food and avoid processed foods as much as you can. Get exercise and avoid a sedentary lifestyle.
5. Distract Yourself
When you’re bored, you’ll notice your chronic pain more. When you’re busy, there’s a lot more to distract you. You’ll find it easier to cope with the pain (and even forget about it for periods of time) when you have things to do.
While most people just want to curl up on the sofa and nap when they’re experiencing chronic pain, you have to fight this urge. Try to spend as much time as you can with other people. This will help take your mind off your symptoms.
Kiss Pain Goodbye
You don’t have to live life with chronic pain. And while it may take months or years to get to the bottom of what’s causing your discomfort, you can find hope in the relief that these tips and techniques provide.
Try implementing them as soon as possible and feel the difference!