We often see ourselves using substances as a way to deal with pain. While they may numb the pain at the time, they can contribute to a larger issue. Substance use and abuse is common when addressing pain problems. Learning other ways to manage this pain will prevent you from engaging in drug related behaviors and building a tolerance to these drugs.
Here are several ways to cope with chronic pain that doesn’t involve drugs!
The endorphins that are released from your body when you exercise have the ability to improve your mood and block pain signals. Not only will exercise trick your brain into thinking you feel better, it will strengthen your body. Exercise controls your risk for acquiring many other diseases by reducing chances of heart disease, weight gain, high blood sugar levels, and more. Exercise will also prevent future injury by strengthening your muscles and keeping your body strong.
Stress from poor mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety, and anger can increase your body’s sensitivity to pain. Practices that allow for positive thoughts to populate will decrease this sensitivity. Examples of these practices include meditation, breathing exercises, listening to calming music or mental imagery relaxation.
Nutrition lies at the heart of all physical and mental health conditions. One way to instantly boost your outcome is by engaging in healthy eating practices. A well balanced diet will regulate your digestive system and provide the necessary nutrition to keep weight, disease, and blood sugar levels under control. A good diet is rich in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and low in sodium. A good diet also promotes proper brain activity and regulates your body’s responses.
No drinking alcohol or smoking!
Alcohol and smoking are often used to as coping mechanisms. While they may provide relief in the moment they actually increase your pain after using them. Alcohol contributes to sleeping issues and can harm the amount of rest your body is receiving. Tobacco can worsen circulation which increases pain problems and the risk of heart disease and cancer.
Get a massage
Getting a message can open of your muscles and release hidden tensions in your body. The less tight your body, the better your oxygen flow. When dealing with neck and back pain, visiting a chiropractor can resolve more serious problems and make adjustments on your entire body.
Meditation has the ability to relax muscles in your body. This goes hand in and with decreasing the overall tension in your body. Focusing on your breaths will increase the energy in your body and promote proper flow. Meditation has a variety of soothing qualities and will help ease pain.
Join a support group
When dealing with chronic pain we tend to feel alone. Meeting others who are experiencing similar issues will boost your ability to cope with your own issues. Working with someone will help you learn new techniques for pain control. Remember, you are not alone in dealing with chronic pain!
Distractions let our mind escape our own thoughts. Participating in an activity you enjoy or a hobby will help fill your time. Your focus will be drawn away from your pain and redirected at something you really enjoy.
Ultimately, learning how to deal with chronic pain instead of introducing foreign substances in your body prevents substance abuse and tolerance. Following these tips will give you a variety of ways to channel that pain. Ensuring that other factors of your health (such as mental) are positive is key to achieving less pain.