We all want to live pain free lives and want to believe the promise of a magic pain pill for relief from pain. However we need to examine the promise from the pharmaceutical firms and understand what is really happening to us from a physical point of view when we take pain killers.
Emotional and physical pain intertwined
We suffer from emotional pain as well as physical pain and often the two are intertwined, as shown in research. Stress can cause a painful migraine or headache and likewise a painful back can make us feel in pain emotionally. The world is not a happy place for those in pain.
Happy and positive people often experience less pain than depressed and negative people, and it is the promise of a pill to help manage pain that leads people to swallow a plethora of tablets.
Western Society and a pill for every ill
Western society consumes the bulk of all pain pills on the market. USA comprises 5% of the world population and consumes 60% of western medication. The big pharmaceutical companies are making huge profits on the dependence of people on their pain medication, and the generation of a numbed-down, dumbed-down population has been the outcome of the pill revolution.
Post 2nd world war has seen the advent of mass marketing of pills. While medical science has advanced with great benefit to society which help people who have injuries or who are debilitated from pain, this group of people and their need for pain pills, form the smallest percentage of pain pill consumers. Most everyday pain pill consumers feel justified in taking pills and will tell you why they need it, and will resist giving them up. These people are the majority of western medication pain pill consumers and have been ‘brainwashed’ with a quick fix promise.
Know that there are better ways to manage pain.
Armed with this information we have forgotten that we do have a choice. If you are one of the people that consume pain pills daily for headaches, backache, or sore-anything and want to change this, read on. Here are five actions you can do to reduce the need for pain pills.
1. UNDERSTAND and accept the concept of “rebound headaches” from excess analgesics. Essentially many headache tablets dehydrate the body and set up chemical pathways that are then craved to be filled. Even though you are pain free for two to three hours after taking the pills, after four hours you will have the same or worse headache. Also notice which foods and alcohol cause headaches and be aware of these triggers.
2. DRINK WATER– one of the common causes of headaches or body aches are simply the body requiring water. Every chemical reaction in the body requires water to enable the reaction so in the absence of water the body will experience a message from the liver or other organs as pain. Drinking water regularly will alleviate headaches. Water even helps if the cause of the headaches are the pills themselves. Note that fizzy cold drinks or coffee are not water – only water is water.
3. CHOOSE TO CUT DOWN OR CUT OUT – make a decision to choose to reduce or cut out pain medication and if you do this you must know that you will get worse before you get better. Your body will experience withdrawals from any regular medication that you have been taking. This needs to be managed carefully depending on how many pills you were taking. A doctor or other professional can help with this process as it takes a few days for the body to adjust to the loss of the medication it was used to.
4. BREATHE – deep breathing, and the mere act of pausing, will calm the body and mind, which helps to reduce pain experienced in the body. This takes practice and again can be supported by research into how breathing deeply or meditating can help with pain reduction. Closing your eyes and focusing on your breathe is the start of the technique of loss of pain experienced. There are also trigger points that can be pressed such as the soft part on the hand at the base of the thumb as well as your forefinger joint which can be gently massaged or “pinched”.
5. INHALE OR APPLY AROMAS – inhaling essential oils like lavender and peppermint can help relieve headaches and applications containing these oils can be applied to joints. Less is more when inhaling because strong smells can cause a headache. Use sparingly while detoxifying off pain pills and then thereafter. The benefit of using oils rather than pain medication is that they are non-addictive, are not harmful to the liver and kidneys and are assisting the body and mind to manage the experience of pain.
These five actions require further research and management and should not be seen as a quick fix. This approach requires a mindshift during an era of “A PILL FOR EVERY ILL” message from the media. The world is waking up to new healthier ways to manage our everyday lives, and you can decide for yourself which path to follow. I choose not to be a victim of the pill revolution – I choose natural and simple – you can too.
Yours in aromatic wellbeing