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How to Kick Your Pain Pill Habit

Certain habits are easy to form and hard to break, like using nicotine or over-eating. However, there are other habits that are difficult to really get into, and far too easy to quit, like working out or eating healthy. Though it doesn’t start as frequently as it normally builds up to, taking pain relievers can be just like any other substance.

You can build up a tolerance, and before you know it you’re taking more than the recommended dosage, more frequently than at the recommended intervals. Pain killers and relievers can be great in moderation, but care must be taken when using any kind of pills.

Today we’d like to give you a few steps to help you kick the pain pill habit. Some steps require more commitment from you, but the payoff is well worth the work you’ll put in.

LOSE WEIGHT

This method is the most simple, yet the most sophisticated. It’s simple because it makes sense: if you lose weight, the stress that your bones and muscles endure will dissipate. The hard part comes in the motivation, forming the habit, and basically just changing your lifestyle so that you’ll not only lose the weight but keep it off. From lowering blood pressure to improving heart health, the benefits of weight loss are numerous. A prominent advantage of weight loss is decreasing and eliminating the pain being overweight puts on your joints, bones, and muscles.

START DOING YOGA

According to a study published in the journal Spine, after two months of yoga practice twice a week, people who formerly suffered lower back pain reported a 42% reduction of pain. This suggests that there’s more to yoga than chanting ohms and seemingly ridiculous poses. Yoga, for most people, stretches and strengthens the lower back and is recommended by the American Pain Foundation as a treatment for lower back pain.

GET REGULAR MASSAGES

Aside from being completely relaxed and feeling good, a massage carries with it quite a few benefits. Joint pain can often be caused by tightened muscles that need to be loosened up. In studies, massage therapy has been known to trigger the release of endorphins and serotonin, both of which can relieve pain and regulate mood. Massages also help rid your tissue of toxins that may be affecting your performance or your pain level. Studies conducted by the Mayo Clinic state that massages can lead to decreased pain and anxiety in most patients.

APPLY HEAT AND/OR ICE

Many of the aches and pains our bodies go through can be alleviated by simply applying ice or heat, depending on the part of the body. There are times when ice or cold should be applied to muscle strains or pulls and it will relieve the pain but the stiffness remains. That’s when you apply the heat. Generally, it’s cold first, wait 15-30 minutes, then heat. Short applications of heat or cold will help relieve most back and body pains.

Keep in mind that not all methods of pain relief will alleviate all symptoms If you’re struggling with chronic pain and none of these methods work for you, don’t lose hope. Sometimes pain relievers are the only answer for what ails you. However, if dependency has become a problem for you or someone you care about, please seek any kind of help or counseling.

Most, if not all, chiropractors focus on non-invasive treatments of spinal and joint pain and discomfort. Working with medical doctors, nurse practitioners and a love of healing, chiropractors help align bones and improve posture. Chiropractic offices typically offer a wide range of services from pain management and spinal decompression to physical therapy and massage.

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