The COVID-19 lockdowns have prevented many chronic-pain sufferers from accessing their usual pain-management options. This situation forced them to look for alternatives they could access without a prescription and use at home. Here are three of the most effective and alternative ways to treat chronic pain from the comfort of home, and what you need to know about each of them.
Have you ever wondered why you put ice on a fresh injury but a heat pack on an old one? Here’s the explanation.
When you have a new injury, you generally get swelling with it. Ice helps to reduce the swelling and can also soothe muscle spasms. Basically, ice takes the heat out of the situation and encourages the body to calm down.
When you have a recurring injury, on the other hand, the problem is less likely to be swelling and more likely to be stiff joints and muscles. In this case, you want to use heat as an alternative way to treat chronic pain at home.
Applying heat causes blood vessels to expand, increasing the flow of blood to stiff joints. It also causes muscles to relax, hence reducing pain. As a bonus, heat also encourages your mind to relax and “unwind.”
There is a wide choice of options for applying heat and ice. These range from sprays to smaller heat pads (for use directly on joints) to infrared saunas.
This means that there is something to suit every need, taste, and budget. Be aware, however, that sprays and creams can have a powerful odor.
Effective alternative ways to treat chronic pain: CBD
CBD combines the effects of ice and heat packs. This is particularly good news for arthritis sufferers. If you have arthritis, you may have inflammation in your joints as well as stiffness and muscle pain.
People with other chronic conditions may use CBD as a convenient alternative to either ice or heat. This is particularly useful if the condition affects the whole body and/or if it strikes randomly. An example is epileptic spasms.
CBD can be used in various ways. These methods include smoking or vaping, topicals, and edibles.
Currently, vaping appears to be the most popular option. It offers the convenience of smoking without the ash or the need for a naked flame.
What’s more, good vaporizers are designed to last. You’ll just need to change the vaporizer battery from time to time.
Mental-wellness treatments are also ways to treat chronic pain
Mental-wellness treatments take a different approach to dealing with pain. Instead of trying to deal with the cause, they try to deal with the symptom. The basic idea is that if you feel better mentally, you’ll be more able to cope with the physical pain.
Mental-wellness treatments are often most effective in combination with other treatments. In fact, it’s entirely possible to combine various mental-wellness treatments with other natural treatments like cold, heat, and CBD.
There are all kinds of mental-wellness treatments available, from adult coloring books to hypnosis. Most, if not all of them are accessible from home, if that’s where you have your desk while holding down a job with chronic pain.
Many of them are available for free too, at least to some extent. For example, you can get reputable guided hypnosis sessions for free online or you can pay for a personalized hypnosis session.