Found: Drug-free cures for back pain

New research has revealed that commonly prescribed medications offer little relief for back pain,but plenty of side effects.here natural remedies that ease the ache-safely.

When back pain gets unbearable and we head to the doctor for relief,odds are we’ll be offered a prescription for painkillers,like opioids. Women ages 40 to 59 are prescribed these pills more than any other age group-in fact.women receive nearly twice as many opioid prescriptions as men.according to a new report by the pharmaceutical consulting firm QuintilesIMS institute.But James Dillard,M.D.,author of The Chronic Pain Solution.cautions that we should think twice before taking the meds.

For starters,the drugs likely won’t help:87 percent of those who take opioids  for back pain get no relief,according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Anesthesiologist.And 75 percent of people experience side effects like fatigue and nausea.”The drugs are also extremely addictive.”says Dr.Dillard.”Going straight for opioids or other drugs is like using a cannon to kill a cockroach.”The good news: “The majority of back pain can be resolved with natural treatments.” assures Dr.Dillard,Here,three safe,fast-acting alternatives.

Best Freebie MEDITATION

“Meditation could be more effective than morphine for someone with back pain.”asserts Dr.Dillard “Research using brain scans seems to show that when someone is able to get into meditative  state.they actually shut down pain pathways in the brain and spinal cord that are hyper excited.Fewer pain signals get to the brain,reducing dis comfort.” And in a study published in JAMA,61 percent of people said daily mindfulness meditation reduced problems related to back pain(trouble walking,sleeping or dressing),and 44 percent were less bothered by the pain they did feel.A guided meditation CD we like: Mindfulness Meditation by Tara Brach,Ph,D.

Best Nutritional Remedy THIS DUO

“All back pain is caused,at least in part,by inflammation.” says Sunil Pail,M.D.,author of An inflammation Nation.The inflammation fighters he recommends: Curcumin,the active compounds in turmeric,shuts down the inflammation-triggering  COX-2 enzymes,explains Dr.Paimwho suggests adding organic turmeric powder to smoothies and taking a supplement that contains 1,000 to 3,000 mg of C3 complex (an easily absorbed form of curcumin).And vitamin D3 reduces levels of proteins that triggers inflammation-an effect that may explain why scientists in the journal Spine found that 95 percent of back pain sufferers felt better after supplementing.The dose Dr.Pai advises: 5,000 IU of D2 daily.

Best gizmo A TENS zapper

Trranscutaeonus electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) uses gentle,low-voltage electrical currents to interface with the body’s ability to send pain signals to the brain,plus it prompts  the release of painkilling endorphins.in a study in the journal of Pain Research.81 percent of people had reductions in back pain after TENS therapy.TENS was formely available only doctors and therapists offices,but new devices(like Omron Pocket Pain Pro,$44,drugstore) allow you to treat yourself at home.They come with pads that,when placed on the skin,transmit tapping and pulsing sensation for fast relief.Experts advise using the device,which is often covered by insurance,for 15 minutes three times a day.Also smart:Apply a capsaicin cream between treatments,says Dr.Dillard.Capsaicin depletes the body’s supply of a chemical that transmits pain signals to the brain.

 

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