For those with conditions like arthritis or fibromyalgia, pain creates discomfort on a regular basis. Even if you don’t experience chronic pain, you may be dealing with a pinched nerve, sports injury, or dislocated joint.
Many people who struggle with pain are looking for natural relief. Taking pain medication can be tough on the body and may cause dependency issues.
Looking for a natural alternative? I’ve put together a few pain solutions for joints and muscles that I too have grown to rely on – and love:
For those with tense muscles, a massage is a great way to target sore areas. A deep tissue massage may cause pain in the moment, but the pressure can help to loosen up knots and break up scar tissue. You may feel sore the day following your massage, but you should notice relief soon after.
Ask your massage therapist to focus on the areas where you experience pain. A leg massage can reduce pain in the shins and knees. If the massage causes intense pain, be sure to let the person know, and they can apply lighter pressure.
Follow your massage with a long soak in the tub for total relaxation.
Pain impacts your ability to get things done; if you’re uncomfortable, it can be difficult to focus on work or hobbies.
When you’re struggling to stay focused, put your work aside and take a few minutes for yourself. Centering your mind and grounding yourself in the present can restore your mental clarity.
To help you stay mindful, find a quiet and comfortable place to relax. Try sitting up straight and practicing deep breathing techniques.
Hot & Cold Packs
If you’re dealing with painful inflammation, applying a temperature-controlled pack can bring down the swelling.
First, try adding a cold pack to the affected area. You can use a frozen bag of peas and press it against the area. It creates a numbing effect that slows nerve signals and reduces tenderness.
If that doesn’t help, you can try a hot pack. The heat will relax tense muscles. Microwave a heat pack to a warm temperature (but not hot enough that it will burn your skin). As your muscles loosen, your pain and soreness should diminish. We recommend trying both methods to see which one works best for you.
When using a hot or cold pack, try pressing it against the area for 10 minutes, then giving it a break.
When you’re in pain, the last thing you want to do is move around. However, stretching your muscles and staying active is a great way to keep your body mobile and healthy. You might find that after light exercise, you feel less pain in your muscles and joints. Examples of these activities include swimming, going for a walk, and gardening.
If exercise is too intense, you can try stretching instead. Consider practicing yoga or visiting a physiotherapist to learn about which stretches are beneficial for your pain issues. These activities work to strengthen the muscles, which can reduce your pain.
During physical activity, it’s important to practice fall prevention for seniors. You may want to ask someone to watch you exercise if you’re concerned about tripping or falling.
After a long night of tossing and turning, you often wake up feeling achy and sore. During sleep, your body repairs itself. A night of poor sleep leaves you feeling even more sensitive to pain than usual. Try to get at least eight hours of sleep each night.
Apply Aloe Vera
Many of us know how relieving aloe vera can be when applied to a sunburn. It can also be used to reduce muscle pain and tension. Apply this gel directly to a sore joint and it may offer relief. You can also find it in the form of pills or powders if you prefer to use it that way.
Alternatively, you can try applying capsaicin cream, which is made with the active ingredient from chili peppers. Readers be warned: use it sparingly, because like the pepper it’s derived from, it causes a burning sensation.
Mix Up Your Diet
I suggest cutting out foods that cause inflammation, which include alcohol, sugar, and trans fats or saturated fats.
Replace those foods with anti-inflammatories. Try things like ginger tea, turmeric, and garlic. If you aren’t a fan of these flavors, you can sneak them into stir-fries or soups. In general, avoid foods that are high in fat or sugar, or anything overly processed.
Pain interferes with one’s ability to enjoy life. I hope that these natural remedies offer you relief without the side effects that come with traditional pain medication. Try a combination of the above methods to reduce pain in your joints and muscles. Trust me, both you and your body will thank me!