Age Positively – Prevent Pain Safely

Pain can immobilize us and prevent us from enjoying life at any age. And so can pain medications. What are the best ways to prevent pain without long-term complications?

In an episode of Dr. Oz a week ago (yes, I admit I am a proud, out-of-the-closet fan!), the doctor and his esteemed guests discussed the prescription drug epidemic sweeping the nation. “Hollywood’s widely publicized addiction problem has hit home. Prescriptions drugs are now the leading cause of fatal overdoses in the US,” the Dr. Oz website reports.

And the worst thing about this new epidemic is that it’s so easy to justify. After all, the doctor has given you permission, if not highly recommended, the medications. Unfortunately, like most drugs, over time, their effectiveness wanes and the user requires more. Many, even prescription drug users, are turning to theft and even murder in order to assuage their cravings.

While I was not surprised by the epidemic proportions of the problem, I must admit that I was shocked by the extent and the degree of violence that otherwise law-abiding citizens, including a preacher’s wife, are taking in small towns across America.  The sad thing is that the regular use of prescription pain medications eventually reduces your body’s natural ability to manage pain. Worse still, by silencing the pain, we suppress our body’s built-in warning system. Pain is there to tell us something. We need to listen to it and find the root cause. When we silence it, we tend to ignore what it is trying to tell us.

What the Dr. Oz Show Taught Us:

• Recognize that pain is a natural and important part of life. It’s how we grow and learn to treat ourselves better. While having bad days and occasional aches are a natural part of life, it’s important to ask ourselves what we can learn from the experiences and sometimes that requires facing the ugly pain demon head on, and as soon as possible.

• Pain is a symptom. Treating it will never cure the original problem. Find and treat the cause, not the symptom.

• Allow your body to respond to the treatment you elect. Natural treatments may require a little time and patience, but in the end, they generally cost less and provide a better and more lasting solution.

What You Can Do To Prevent Pain (or how to keep your body from yelling at you):

Back Pain – try a lumbar roll for the small of your back when sitting for extended periods of time. It offers lower back support and makes you sit up straight. You can purchase one for $20 or roll a beach towel and use that. Try this back pain prevention checklist courtesy of Dr. Oz.

Joint Pain – take Glucosamine and Chondroitin, or better yet, SAMe, as a preventive measure.

Headaches – generally caused by dehydration, stress, a lack of caffeine, sleep deprivation, or poor brain circulation, a quick fix of coffee or tea can help in the short run. In the long run, if you have regular headaches, visit a doctor to make sure you are not at risk for a more serious disease. Taking 5 HTP supplements in the morning is highly recommended as a means of minimizing stress and promoting promoting restful sleep.

For my current back pain, I’ve been visiting a chiropractor and assessing my sleeping and sitting environments. Since the show aired, I have added my own beach towel lumbar support and sought the services of an acupuncturist. I’ll keep you posted on my progress.

How about you? Have have you successfully prevented or minimized pain in your life?

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