Every New Year’s Day, many people make a promise to themselves to engage in an act of self-improvement or to be nicer to others. Many people make a resolution to improve their physical well-being by eating healthier foods, losing weight, exercising more, drinking less alcohol and quitting smoking.
If you suffer from mild, moderate or chronic physical pain, reducing or eliminating that pain is a worthwhile resolution. Some ways to get your pain in check include:
If Overweight, Reduce Body Weight – Why does excess body weight result in physical pain for some people? “If you are carrying an extra fifty to hundreds pounds of weight, imagine that weight in two suitcases that you have to carry around every day,” says Carolyn Dean, MD ND, Medical Advisory Board Member, Nutritional Magnesium Association. “The pounds of pressure every minute of every day on your spine, hips, knees and ankles add up to chronic stress, deterioration of the bones and poor alignment.”
Move it or Lose It – While most doctors and nutritionists agree that weight loss can occur by diet alone, regular daily exercise can help prevent excess weight gain and maintain weight loss. “Regular exercise, at least 150 minutes each week is recommended,” says Leigh Tracy, RD, LDN, a dietitian at Baltimore’s Center for Endocrinology at Mercy Medical Center.
Exercise improves your pain threshold,” says Dave Endres, a licensed Physical Therapist and co-founder of SPEAR Physical Therapy in New York. “With continual cardiovascular, strengthening, and flexibility exercises, you can improve that pain threshold.”
Get Topical – Topical analgesics offer controlled pain relief with fewer adverse interactions with other medications. Please consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions about drug interactions and the drugs you are taking. During the last couple of years there have been a number of pill recalls in the United States. Additionally, American consumers have a growing concern about what they are putting into their bodies and are looking for other options in pain relief. They are realizing that it may not be a great idea to pop a pill at the first twinge of pain whether it is muscle and joint pain, back and knee pain or arthritis aches.
“With a topical, you can deliver much less medicine to the body because you’re applying it directly at the site of pain. The Salonpas® Pain Relieving Patch Large is the first topical non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDS) approved through the FDA’s rigorous New Drug Application process which is the same process used to approve prescription medicines,” says Dr. Aristotle Economou, author of the book Change the Way You Heal: 7 Steps to Highly Effective Healing.