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In Pain? 5 Tips for Natural Pain Relief

September is Pain Awareness Month, and if you’re like nearly 100 million other Americans, you know what it’s like to be in pain. Per Johns Hopkins Medicine:

  1. Nearly 100 million Americans experience chronic pain, which is defined as lasting weeks to years

  2. Pain is a warning sign that indicates a problem that needs attention

  3. Pain starts in nerve cells beneath the skin and in organs throughout the body

  4. Living with pain can be debilitating and adversely affect everyday life

And, according to one study, 59% of truck drivers experience low back pain, which is often the result of long hours in the driver’s seat. 

Of course, it’s important to discuss any concerns about pain with a trusted healthcare provider, but here are some things to try for natural pain relief in the meantime. They’re fairly accessible and low cost (or free!), especially as compared to some medications and medical procedures. They also have nearly no risk for negative side effects, which is not usually the case for more invasive treatments. 

  1. Turmeric. Turmeric is a spice that’s common in Indian and Asian cuisine. It contains curcumin, which is what gives it its yellow color. It’s also well-known for it’s anti-inflammatory properties, which are linked to reduced pain. Try adding it to curries or other sauces and soups, or sprinkling it in things like eggs or tomato juice. You can also ask your doctor about taking it in capsule form. Stay tuned for a recipe highlighting this bright yellow anti-inflammatory spice!

  2. Ginger. Like turmeric, ginger is a spice that has anti-inflammatory properties. It may be especially helpful in relief of pain from arthritis or exercise. Try this Fresh Ginger Tea, which has directions for including turmeric, too.

  3. Essential oils. The essential oils of lavender, rosemary, peppermint, eucalyptus, and cloves are all associated with pain relief. Oils can be inhaled or rubbed into the skin depending on the oil and the specific pain point. Correct dosing and use of quality oils is very important, so researching use and consulting with a trusted professional is recommended.

  4. Acupuncture. Inserting fine needles into the skin may sound painful, but acupuncture is an ancient art that has been used for centuries in Asia and is particularly well known for pain relief. From chronic back or neck pain to arthritis to migraines, acupuncture may be the missing piece in your pain relief puzzle.

  5. Yoga/Meditation. If you’ve been following the blog for awhile, you already know about the benefits of yoga for truck drivers, which include decreased pain. Yoga is accessible to every body. It can be done over the road and doesn’t require any special equipment, clothing, skill or flexibility. For more information, see our previous blog post HERE.

fresh ginger root

These tips are merely the tip of the iceberg when it comes to natural pain relief. If one (or more!) of them interests you, we recommend doing some digging to learn more about what might be a good fit for you and your particular situation. We want all of our drivers to feel their best, so comment to let us know if you have any thoughts or questions!

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