Getting Rid of That Old ‘Pain in the Neck’

No, I don’t mean your mother-in-law or your husband. I’m talking about that ubiquitous agony that torments your body after a stressful day at the office or a traumatic accident from the preceding decade.

It’s difficult to stay upbeat and energized when recurrent pains gnaw at us with their prickly talons.  In order to avoid becoming the nefarious ‘pain in the neck’ ourselves, it’s important to find ways to prevent and address our aches before they get the better of us.

This topic weighs heavy on me this week as I face my second long day of a neck ache that keeps threatening to become a full-blown headache. My lower back isn’t faring too well either. I can write both off to too many hours in front of my computer (as this is my busy season) or the 13-mile half-marathon I ran last week in less than three hours despite the fact that I had not trained as planned. Of course, my real concern right now is what I can do to reduce the swelling and misalignment to make myself feel right again.

Nothing makes us feel older than ongoing pain, and if you’ve ever seen someone who has lived with pain for an extended period of time, you can see how it ages them. So let’s nip these aches and pains in the bud so we can keep doing all the wonderful things that make us healthy agers who are positively old.

According to the American Pain Foundation, complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) is growing at a rate of 15% each year, with more than $24 billion spent on therapies outside conventional medicine. Alternative medicine employs methods like acupuncture, chiropractic therapy, magnetic therapy and combinations thereof to fight pain.

Walking, swimming, and my personal favorite, yoga, are soothing exercises that can be done to prevent pain or help restore the body to a state of ease after the onset of painful joints or tight muscles.

Here are a couple of other ideas I have found online that I thought everyone might benefit from. I’d love to hear some of your surefire solutions as well.

Reducing Inflammation as a Means of Reducing Pain

Reducing Pain Through Hypnosis

Relieving Stress and Changing Perceptions to Minimize Pain

Stiff Joints Don’t Have to Slow You Down

Preventing Back Pain – Great Tips on the Best Positions in the Car, in Bed and At work!

Exercise for Pain Reduction

Laughter, a Prescription for Pain Reduction

The most important thing is to address your pain early before it becomes chronic and to get knowledgeable advice on curing the problem, not just minimizing the symptoms.

As for me, I’m going to go stretch out now, and then maybe take a hot shower followed by a nice ice pack. See you on the track next week!

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2 Responses to “Getting Rid of That Old ‘Pain in the Neck’”
  1. Hi Karen, great post – too many people just give up and start rusting out. Our bodies are meant to move and even fifteen minutes of walking a day can help get your juices flowing. Add in a few minutes of gentle stretching especially after sitting in front of computer/TV for a long period of time. Terrific links, too!
    Evelyn

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