5 Ways to Manage Your Chronic Pain

Chronic pain is incredibly common in the US – (Stats)

Pain serves a critical function in the body: letting you know when there is a problem. It can arise quickly or intensify gradually, and it can be constant or periodic.

Treatment should accomplish pain relief but also prevent long-term health issues. Although the body often recovers from injuries, acute pain leads to chronic pain in 1 out of every 5 cases (National Institutes of Health). Further, the prevalence is astonishing when compared to other major health conditions (American Academy of Pain Medicine):

Health condition

  • Stroke
  • Cancer
  • Heart attack / chest pain
  • Diabetes
  • Chronic pain

Number of Americans with the diagnosis 

  • 7 million
  • 12 million
  • 16 million
  • 26 million
  • 100 million

Easy lifestyle changes

Here are a few simple tips for DIY chronic pain management that you can start using today:

Get plenty of water

Dehydration is known to exacerbate pain conditions and cause secondary headaches.

“Although it may be tempting to load up on coffee, soda, or juice, their diuretic effect makes them poor sources for hydration,” noted Healthline. “Water keeps you hydrated without the extra calories, sodium, or caffeine.”

Change your diet

You also may know that some foods are inflammatory (and thereby pain-inducing), while others are anti-inflammatory. Items thought to be anti-inflammatory are:

  • Kale, spinach, and other leafy greens (which registered dietitian Jill Nussinow calls “the No. 1 food you can eat regularly to help improve your health”);
  • Salmon, flaxseeds, and other foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids
  • Asparagus
  • Pineapple, plums, cranberries, cherries, and other fruits with limited sugar.

You can also achieve pain relief by sprinkling turmeric into a meal or cup of tea.

Just as it’s helpful to include more of the above, note that the below foods are inflammatory and should be avoided as possible:

  • Eggplant, tomatoes, and other nightshades
  • Milk, cheese, and other dairy
  • Chocolate
  • Eggs
  • Oranges, lemons, and other citrus
  • Beef and other fat-dense red meat
  • Anything containing wheat
  • Anything in a box or can (“processed”)
  • Soda, coffee, and red wine.

Consider yoga and meditation

Stress makes muscles spasm, so yoga, meditation, and other relaxation techniques are critical in alleviating chronic pain.

Stand up straight

Slouching and positioning your head farther forward than your spine impinges nerves and hinders circulation. Make sure that your spine is stacked in its natural “S” curve, without any hunching.

Get help

Sometimes adjusting posture, diet, and exercise doesn’t suffice. If you need more than the above DIY tactics, Advanced Wellness and Rehab can help with nonsurgical chronic pain treatment. Get the relief you deserve with our Spinal Rejuvenation Therapy Program.

By | 2017-03-10T11:12:39+00:00 June 11th, 2015|Blog, Chronic Pain|0 Comments

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