Flossing – Remove Your Plaque With Few Hassles

Flossing – Remove Your Plaque With Couple of Hassles

How Important Is Flossing?

In a single word…very! Flossing not just cleans regions of one’s teeth where ordinary toothbrushes can’t achieve, it’s a main factor in stopping gums and teeth. Brushing is a superb beginning, but flossing is an important factor with regards to keeping healthy teeth. The bacteria that will get caught within the the nooks and crannies between teeth as well as in the tight spaces that toothbrushes can’t achieve is taken away by flossing.

Bacteria, otherwise removed regularly, could cause a number of problems inside a person’s mouth. For example, a consequence from the bacteria is acidity this acidity eats in to the enamel of otherwise teeth and helps to create tooth decay. Another consequence from the bacteria is really a sulfur compound which in turn causes halitosis

Remains of food, coupled with remaining bacteria becomes plaque. Plaque, left hanging out between your teeth will end up a more powerful more toothbrush resistant substance known as tarter. Tarter isn’t removed by normal brushing. Tarter remover necessitates the expertise of the dental professional.

Tarter left alone enables the bacteria to reproduce and result in a more serous condition known as gum disease. Gum disease takes place when the bacteria emits toxins that irritate the gums and results in swelling and redness. Left alone, it worsens and results in periodontal disease.

Periodontal disease takes place when the bacteria happen to be permitted to manifest and invade not just the gums, but the bones. This really is harmful since the bones would be the very support structure that holds teeth in position. Not treated, teeth will drop out.

I’ve Not Flossed Shortly. What Must I Expect?

There are flossed in a long time, there’s possible that you might visit a hint of bloodstream around the floss as well as in the mouth area. Which means that your gums are somewhat inflammed and therefore are really looking for flossing. Don’t quit. Keep flossing. During a period of time, with regular flossing and brushing, the red should diminish and finally disappear. If it doesn’t, visit your dental professional.

How Frequently Must I floss?

Based on the Ada, you need to brush two times each day

having a fluoride tooth paste and floss at least one time each day.

How About The Kids? When Whenever They Get Flossing?

The moment two teeth can rub together, thus developing a condition whereby food and bacteria can hide and also be, get flossing. Obviously when they’re youthful, they’ll require parental guidance. Continue doing so before you feel at ease that the child can correctly floss unaided.

How Do You Floss?

1.) Use about 18 inches of floss and wind the majority of it round the middle finger of 1 hands and also the rest round the middle finger from the other hands.

2.) Lightly advice the floss involving the teeth having a rubbing motion.

3.) When the floss gets near your gumline curve the floss against one tooth inside a ‘C’ shape. Slide it lightly within the space between you tooth and gum.

4.) And keep the floss from the tooth, lightly, by having an up and lower motion, slowly move the floss from the gum.

5.) Repeat when needed.

6.) Make sure to floss between all your teeth, the difficult to achieve ones at the back of the mouth area. Also floss the rear of the final teeth.

7.) Remember this can be a gentle motion. Don’t use a frontward, backward sawing motion. That induce injuries and end up being painful.

Pulling Your Own Teeth

Pulling Your Personal Teeth

Though it may seem very odd and downright compelling, many people really attempt to extract their very own teeth. Tooth pain discomfort can be quite painful and incredibly frustrating, causing you to try almost anything to get relief. For the way bad the discomfort is, you will be willing to a single thing you are able to to obtain the discomfort to prevent. Abscesses or terrible tooth decay are some of the worst, because the discomfort never appears to allow up – regardless of what you need to do.

Several years ago, teeth were extracted by pliers, because there weren’t any dentists around. Over these occasions, people would get drunk on alcohol and so the teeth could be extracted. There wasn’t any such factor as anaesthesia in those days, therefore it was impossible to in your area numb the discomfort. Nowadays though, local anaesthesia is the easiest method to numb a tooth pain before pulling your tooth. Should you make an effort to pull a tooth yourself, you’ll have the discomfort regardless of what you need to do.

You will find situations however, that you can pull your personal teeth. Baby teeth for instance, are acceptable to drag. Before you decide to yank it though, you can examine on age once the tooth under consideration ought to be removed. Should you wiggle your tooth around also it seems to become loose, then odds are it’ll emerge with no problem. However, should you pull your tooth also it happens to be an abscess, you’ll finish track of a genuine problem as well as your hands and it’s important to go to a dental professional once you can.

Another situation that is suitable to drag your personal teeth is if you have a serious situation of gums and teeth. Gums and teeth may cause the socket and also the bone to get very decayed, resulting within the destruction from the tooth. When the gums and teeth is severe enough, your tooth is going to be very loose and can emerge with no problem. In some instances, your tooth could be almost intolerable to touch. For those who have gums and teeth and see a loose tooth, you ought to be careful when pulling it. Should you not get it done correctly or you get it done too early, you can finish up breaking the top tooth. Should this happen, it’s important to visit the dental professional to achieve the other parts of the tooth eliminate.

Despite the fact that a tooth may go through loose whenever you touch it, doesn’t mean that you could grab a set of pliers and rip it. Teeth are extremely delicate. By trying to tear a tooth by helping cover their set of pliers making a mistake, you need to finish up doing more damage than good. Putting pliers inside your mouth may also result in contamination, which may give back towards the dental professional. Abscesses however, will not be worked with by yourself – it’s important to visit a dental professional to possess him correctly extract your tooth and provide you with some antibiotics to prevent the problem.

To become safe and sound and steer clear of any potential issues that may easily arise, it is best to visit the dental professional for those who have a tooth pain. Regardless of how bad the discomfort might be, you shouldn’t make an effort to pull your tooth yourself. Your dental professional can numb the region before he pulls your tooth, so you’ll feel no discomfort whatsoever. He’ll also prescribe you some discomfort medicine and antibiotics too, to assist in treating any infection you might have. Should you make an effort to pull your tooth yourself, you’ll only cause more problems within the finish – and finish up seeing a dental professional anyway.

Gugulipid

Gugulipid

An old plant, guglipid comes from the resin resembling a gum in the mukul myrrh tree. It goes back to 1000’s of years ago and has been utilized in India’s traditional Ayuverda medicine.

The Mukul Tree

The mukul tree, or Commiphora mukul, the guarana plant that gugulipid is extracted, is really a small, thorny plant that grows throughout northern India. It creates a gum-like resin known as guggul. Sometimes, guggul is also called guggul gum, guggal, gugglesterone, guggulu, and gum gugal.

The gugulipid tree is carefully associated with the Commiphora mukul tree or common myrrh, that was used among the first medicines. There have been even hieroglyphic notations of their use throughout the ancient Eqyptian occasions. With your a detailed relation, many scientists think that gugulipid might have most of the same qualities as myrrh as even their ancient status is comparable.

Health Advantages

Within the 1960s, researchers in India discovered an old Sanskrit medical text, Sushruta Samhita. This classical book of drugs described the prescription of gugulipid to treat medoroga, an illness that carefully resembles signs and symptoms of high cholesterol levels and hardening from the arterial blood vessels. To check this ancient theory, Indian scientists used gugulipid on creatures. They later discovered that gugulipid both decreased levels of cholesterol and guarded against the introduction of hardening from the arterial blood vessels.

A culminating study was subsequently conducted, analyzing the potency of gugulipid on humans. Although of their potency continue to be quite preliminary, the Indian government was impressed enough to approve it as being cure for top cholesterol.

Within the Sushruta Samhita, gugulipid seemed to be recommended for weight loss and also the relief of joint disease. Some recent reports have noted benefits of these conditions, in addition to acne and many other concerns. Within the ancient occasions, the folks used gugulipid inside a crude, powdered form. Today, gugulipid can be obtained like a supplement inside a more refined form.

Furthermore, guglipid was utilized as soon as 600 B.C. as treatment for those who are afflicted by an ailment connected with regular overindulgence in wealthy foods and sedate lifestyle – an ailment we currently call as coronary artery disease. Present scientists have researched the advantages of gugulipid on coronary artery disease plus they could discover that the refined resin from the mukul tree inhibits formation of plaque that hardens arterial blood vessels. In addition, ingredients in gugulipid known as guggulsterones can encourage amounts of fat in your body to decrease. Therefore lowers the chance of cardiovascular disease.

Buying Information

Prior to going out and purchase your gugulipid supplement, make sure to talk to your physician first. For those who have liver disease, inflammatory bowel disease, or diarrhea, there’s a strong possibility that your physician may advice you from using the supplement. Women that are pregnant also needs to require it.

During product selection, search for one that’s clearly marked like a gugulipid supplement and never guggul or guggulu. The second goods are crude, unrefined types of the resin and could contain harmful toxins, which could cause appetite loss, stomach discomfort, diarrhea, and rashes. Gugulipid however continues to be refined and possesses just the ingredients with no toxins.

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KEYWORDS “Gugulipid” – 16 (density = 3.1%)

Diabetes and Your Mouth

Diabetes as well as your Mouth

We diabetics need to pay much more focus on our gums and teeth than others.

We’re at and the higher chances of tooth decay, gums and teeth and tooth infections. Not just that, but individuals infections may cause our bloodstream sugar to increase, therefore it turns into a vicious circle.

Here are a few mouth problems common in diabetics.

Plaque

Plaque is, obviously, an issue for most people, not only diabetics. But it is brought on by starches and sugars, not to mention we’ve greater than our share of individuals! So diabetics are highly vulnerable to plaque.

Xerostomia

Sometimes my mouth is really dry each morning I’m able to hardly speak—I’m sure you are aware how that feels. But it is not only inconvenient, it’s harmful to the healthiness of our mouths. The thing is, saliva washes away most of the bacteria that create tooth decay and gums and teeth. Xerostomia cuts the quantity of saliva readily available for this task, so it makes sense more tooth decay and gums and teeth. Xerostomia sometimes also creates inflammation from the soft tissue within the mouth, making eating difficult and uncomfortable.

While you will find artificial saliva substitutes, which your dental professional let you know about, you are able to usually excite your own saliva by sucking on the sugar-free hard chocolate. I love no-sugar-added Ricola for this function. Not to mention, consuming water helps.

Yeast infections

Furthermore we diabetics tight on saliva than we want, however the saliva we all do have has elevated levels of sugar content, therefore it is double difficulties for us. This could result in a yeast infection known as candiasis, generally referred to as thrush. It creates sore red or white-colored spots within the mouth. Medication might help though, so ask your dental professional.

Like a diabetic, you have to pay great focus on dental hygiene. Brush the teeth two times each day, and floss daily. Examine your gums for indications of problems—and always go to your dental professional a minimum of two times annually.

The World of Sports Nutrition

The World of Sports Nutrition

Advancements in medicine and an increase in capitalism in the world as well as other factors all contributed to the development of the field of sports nutrition.

As scientists learned more and more about our bodies and the optimum level of strength and physical fitness they can harbor, businessmen jumped the gun and manufactured products and services that actually help athletes meet these optimum levels. The media joined in the ruckus and published materials leading to the promotion of both the scientific and the commercial side of the field.

Sports nutrition has been changing through the years around the world. It’s not just that the topics are different – the emphasis and approach have also changed.

Peak Performance, a sports magazine carried an article on dehydration in runners on October 1990, its maiden issue. This article compared the benefits of plain water with those of dilute glucose solutions, which are more isotonic and therefore absorbed more rapidly.

Today, go into almost any supermarket, convenience stores and even school cafeterias and you’ll find a ready supply of sports drinks aimed at maintaining hydration just like glucose solutions.

The difference is that by using soluble long-chain glucose polymers instead of simple glucose, it’s now possible to create an isotonic hydrating drink which also supplies significant amounts of carbohydrate to working muscles. And, the good thing is, sports drinks also taste better.

More than 10 years ago, it was made public that muscle damage brought about by free-radicals may be reduced by having supplements of antioxidant vitamins A, C and E. Years after, antioxidant supplementation became a norm in the world of sports nutrition.

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Now, researchers are also beginning to understand that muscle damage is a more complex subject. It is difficult to assess free radical damage in athletes and it has been found out that large amounts of antioxidant nutrients may actually cause cellular damage and impair performance.

The “Carbo loading” technique has been widely used over the years by athletes all over the world. A carbohydrate-rich diet is important in maintaining muscle glycogen stores thus ensuring high endurance levels.

However, in the 1990’s it became clear that the ‘glycaemic index’ and release rate of different carbohydrates had important influence on when they should best be consumed in relation to physical activity.

The relationship of carbohydrates and proteins were also discovered namely that carbohydrates promote protein-sparing in the body. It was also discovered recently that consuming carbohydrates before and during prolonged bouts of strenuous exercise can help protect the immune system.

One of the most exciting recent developments in sports nutrition has been the rise of creatine supplementation. The use of creatine is now very common. Creatine renews the muscles essential energy source, ATP or adenosine triphosphate. Increased levels in muscles optimizes energy turnover meaning you’ll more energy for high power exercise and faster recovery during and after workouts. Creatine also increases the athlete’s maximum effort, delays fatigue and therefore prolongs endurance.

New wisdom and therefore new products have definitely enabled athletes to fuel themselves better, work harder, train longer and recover more rapidly. However, as in any kind of innovation there will always be downsides.

Nutritional supplements available to most athletes in the 80’s were very straightforward. Some athletes took drugs but the boundaries between nutritional supplements and drugs clear. Today, the race to find new formulas to boost performance has resulted to the availability of sports nutrition supplements which do not really occur naturally. The result is that the distinction between a nutrient and a performance-enhancing substance has become increasingly blurred.

Some of these supplements contain ingredients that can cause athletes to violate the rules and regulations governing their sport because of unintentional contamination by other, ‘exotic’, substances present in the supplement manufacturing environment.

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More developments will be created in the world of sports nutrition and these will definitely spawn ethical questions. “Nutrigenomics”—the relationship between genetics and nutrition—will be more researched upon.

As scientists become more skilled at discovering the processes of our genes, it will be possible that rather than adopting a general approach for sports nutrition, athletes around the world will be genetically tested to help them determine precise individual requirements for optimum health.

The next years will predictably be more exciting for the world of sports nutrition.

Gingivitis – A Gum Problem

Gingivitis – A Gum Problem

It is a very common event in everyone’s life to see swollen or bleeding gums when you get up to brush your teeth. This problem with your gums, due to inflammation is called Gingivitis. At least one member in every household would be suffering from this problem. If is not treated at the nick of time it can aggravate to become a serious gum disease like peiodontitis. Gingivitis is a form of periodontal disease wherein you suffer inflammation as well as infection of gums.

Plaque is a sticky film made up of bacteria. It is found on your teeth when sugar and starch in your food comes in contact with the bacteria primarily found in your mouth. Plaque once removed can be easily formed within 24 hrs. When these sticky films of plaque are not removed on time they harden under your gum line to form tartar. Not maintaining simple oral hygiene is one of the main causes of gingivitis. If proper care is taken you can avoid the plaque deposits, which are long term effects of gingivitis.

Gingivitis is one of the major causes of tooth decay. The combination of plaque and tartar can irritate your gums causing gingiva. Gums get terribly damaged due to bacteria and toxin bacteria making it swollen and tender (a reason for bleeding gums).

There are different levels of gingivitis varying from mild, moderate and severe. Anybody to everybody is affected by this problem. It is said to develop during the time of puberty or when there is an increase in hormones i.e. during early period of adulthood. This mainly depends how sound your teeth and gums are.

Diabetes increases your chances of having gingivitis. Having dry mouth increases the risk of gum disease. Having a weak immunity can also cause this problem to arise. To avoid such a face off with death, proper oral hygiene would help you in the long run.

Common Signs and Symptoms

-Suffering with mouth sores
-Swollen gums
-Bleeding gums while brushing
-Tender/soft gums
-Change in color of the gums

Basic Preventive Measures

-Maintaining good oral hygiene
-Brush your teeth twice a day
-Floss your teeth
-Avoid too much sweet and starchy food
-Eat more fruits and vegetables
-Get dental check-up twice in a year

Home Remedies you can try

A mixture of baking soda with little water should be applied on your gums with your finger. Once this is done, brush your teeth to remove the bacterial waste for sparkling effect.

Mix 3% solution of Hydrogen peroxide with equal amounts of water. Swish, not swallow, this solution in your mouth for 30 seconds. This helps to kill the bacteria.

You can brush your gums and teeth with Aloe Vera gel for better effects. It helps in reduction of plaque formation as well as works as a healing agent.

Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautions while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using if you are allergic to something. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.

Issues Regarding Gout Treatment

Issues Regarding Gout Treatment

Due to improper diet, sedentary lifestyle and obesity, many people suffer from gout these days. Gout predominantly affects men and the disease is most likely to occur at a more advanced age. Men with ages over 50 usually develop forms of gout. In some cases, women can also develop the disease after the age of 60.

There are many factors that facilitate the development of gout, but the actual cause of the disease seems to be the body’s excessive secretion of a substance called uric acid. Uric acid is a residual product that is excreted from the body through urine. The surplus of uric acid inside the body leads to its accumulation in the form of uric crystals. These crystals deposit in different regions of the organism, causing inflammation. Gout mainly affects joints, especially those of the lower body limbs. Gout causes inflammation, swelling and intense pain of the affected areas.

Although the disease can be corrected through an appropriate gout treatment, there is no specific cure for it. Many medicines prescribed for gout usually control its symptoms, rather than the actual causes. However, some of the causes of gout can be overcome through the means of a good, healthy diet. It is very important to reduce the consumption of alcohol when suffering from gout, as it interferes with renal activity. Smoking is known to cause damage to arteries and it can also slow down the process of healing.

Gout usually involves intense pain of the joints. Pain episodes tend to become more intense during the night and sometimes people with gout have trouble sleeping. Although some medicines don’t prevent pain attacks from reoccurring, they are effective for temporarily reducing it. Common medicines prescribed in gout treatments are non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (indomethacin, ketoprofen, diclofenac, ibuprofen, and naproxen). They are efficient in calming the inflammation and also ameliorate the pain. Anti-inflammatory drugs are usually well-tolerated by the body. They are administered orally, in the quantities prescribed by the doctor.

Another substance used in gout treatment is Colchicine. Although it considerably reduces pain and discomfort of the regions affected by gout, it also has a lot of side effects. Due to this fact, Colchicine is only administered to patients suffering from acute gout or to those who don’t respond well to gout treatment with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

Corticosteroids are also used in some gout treatments. They quickly relief the pain and they can usually be injected directly into the affected joint. However, they are used only in extreme cases, due to their multiple side effects.

Although proper diet and drinking larger quantities of water are a natural way of getting rid of the surplus of uric acid from the body, some medicines can also help to normalize the levels of the substance. Such medicines are usually used in chronic gout treatment. Allopurinol is an inhibitor that decreases the quantities of uric acid secreted by the body. Uricosuric Agents like probenecid and sulfinpyrazone improve the activity of the kidneys, aiding the process of excretion.

Many symptoms of gout can be ameliorated by following an appropriate gout treatment. However, when suffering from chronic forms of gout the symptoms reappear after certain periods of time and ongoing treatment is necessary.

Natural Remedies for Losing Weight – Guarana

Natural Remedies for Losing Weight – Guarana

Guarana (Paullinia cupana) is another herbal promoted as a natural remedy for losing weight and is made from the seeds of a plant native to Brazil. The seed of the Guaraná is a central nervous system stimulant with thermogenic and diuretic properties.

Basically what is in guarana is caffeine – up to two to three times the amount of caffeine that coffee has. Guarana is the richest-known source of caffeine. You can find guarana as a major ingredient in energy drinks, which don’t state there is caffeine in the drink, but rather say it provides an energy boost. Rather an understatement, as it’s more like a major buzz. Coffee contains 100 mg of caffeine, Coke or Pepsi 36 mg, and Energy Drinks any where from 169 to 259 mg. That’s a rush.

Guarana falls into a category of weight loss supplements called thermogenesis right along with ephedra, caffeine and salicin. Basically it boosts your metabolic rate, causing your body to burn calories faster plus curb the appetite. Body fat that isn’t burned is stored on your hips, thighs, stomach, etc.

If you are going to go for this kind of product in your weight loss journey, you will need to find one strong enough to curb your appetite, that zips up the metabolism to burn more calories, create heat to burn more fat, and doesn’t give unwanted side effects such as: jitteriness, nervousness, or heart palpitations.

Taking a higher dose doesn’t mean you lose weight faster. Instead, you just have more side effects. With thermogenesis based products drink more water (due to the heat factor), do not skip meals (low blood sugar), and do not take late at night (it will keep up awake) What you also need to remember with products that stimulate is stimulants burn calories, but increases heart rate and blood pressure. Caffeine suppresses the appetite, but gives you the jitters, mood swings and tension.

What to choose? You will face some hard choices when it comes to deciding what might be the right natural remedy for losing weight for you. Guarana (or caffeine) may suppress appetite to a certain extent at high levels. On its own it’s not a very effective supplement to create thermogenesis. Combine it with Ma Huang (Ephedra), and it appears the caffeine extends the appetite suppressing action of Ephedra and increases caloric expenditure. But you might not want to be combining two powerful stimulants together. And you most definitely do not want to be taking this if you are on blood thinner medications like Coumadin.

Prescribed Meds & Its Effects On Your Mouth

Prescribed Meds & Its Effects On Your Mouth

Some medications can affect your teeth and gums. It is mainly because of the composition of the medicine that you are taking in. When you are experiencing any of these, you should consult the doctor so that it will be treated immediately. So, what are the common effects of the medications to the teeth and the gums?
Abnormal Bleeding. Some medications like the anticoagulants and the aspirin can cause the gums to have an abnormal bleeding. They lessen the clotting ability of the blood and this leads to abnormal bleeding during an oral surgery. Before undergoing any surgical procedure in the mouhth, it’s important to let your dentist know that you are taking in some aspirins or anticoagulants so that precautions can be done to minimize the bleeding of your gums. Also, when brushing your teeth, you should use a toothbrush with soft bristles to reduce the gum bleeding.
Tissue Reactions. If you are taking in some medications for blood pressure, chemotherapy, oral contraceptives and immunosuppressive agents, there is a possibility that you can develop some tissue reactions on your gums. Your gums can be inflamed, you can develop a mouth sore, or the tissues on your gums and your mouth can have some discoloration. When having this kind of medication effect, you should let your dentist know it beforehand. A special dental care will be prescribed to you to ease the pain or the discomfort that you are feeling and to prevent these tissue reactions as much as possible.
Gum Swelling. The gum enlargement can occur when you are taking medications for epilepsy and other antiseizures, cardiovascular medications such as calcium channel blockers, and immunosuppressant drugs. The gum enlargement may sometimes cause you to feel uncomfortable. Also, an enlarged gum is more sensitive than a normal gum. While you are taking any of these medications that can cause gum enlargement, you should take an extra care when brushing your teeth and flossing. The best solution for this medication effect is to consult your dentist so that he or she can give you the specific dental instructions to treat this gum enlargement.
Tooth Cavity Risks. Medications that contain sugar, especially those that are prescribed to kids, can cause the cavity to form on the teeth. The medicines that contain sugar include antacid tablets, cough drops, chewable tablets, antifungal agents, and vitamins. Taking in too much of these medicines can lead to the formation of cavities on the teeth.
To avoid having cavities while taking these medicines, it is best to drink these medicines in the tablet form and they should be taken in after having a meal so that you can brush your teeth afterwards. Do not take in these medicines just before going to bed. The sugar will be left on the teeth and that will lead to the formation of the cavity. You can also chew a sugarless gum as an alternative for brushing your teeth.
Teeth and Gum Discoloration. There are some drugs also that can alter or change the color of your gums and teeth. Some of medicines include the minocycline, a treatment for acne, and the chlorhexidine, a gum disease treatment. The minocycline leaves a black pigmentation on the gums. Also, it leaves a grayish color on the teeth. The chlorhexidine, on the other hand, can leave a stain on the teeth.
Discuss a tooth-whitening procedure with your dentist if you want to remove the stains that were left on your teeth.

Alternative Approaches to Pain Relief

Alternative Approaches to Pain Relief

Pain. The great leveler. The rich feel it. So do the poor, the happy, the sad, tall, and short. And, of course, article writers, too. It’s therefore not surprising to note that since the dawn of time, humans have attempted to discover ways to reduce pain. In some respect, our ability to experience pain, and seek ways to solve it, connects us more than anything else. But what exactly is pain and how do we deal with it?
Pain is a message sent by the body to the brain, signaling the presence of disease, injury or strain. Without pain, you would be unaware of many problems – from torn ligaments to appendicitis. Pain is simply, Mother Nature’s way of telling you something is wrong.
Many of us kill the messenger with narcotics, anti-depressants and tranquilizers that take care of the symptoms, but not the cause of the pain. This kind of treatment cannot only mask symptoms of serious disease, but can also create a cycle of chronic pain.
Not all pain though, serves a useful function. While acute pain, as described above can alert us to a serious problem, chronic pain can linger long after an ailment or injury has healed in the body. Examples of chronic pain include backache, migraines and arthritis. In these cases, pain management, as opposed to a cure, may become the goal of treatment.
The psychological effects that accompany recovery from a disease or injury heighten chronic pain. A loss of confidence is often triggered by prolonged periods of rest and inactivity that cause a loss of physical strength, endurance and flexibility. If the injury has prevented you from performing your usual duties, you may succumb to frustration and depression. Impatience is chronic pain’s best friend as many individuals overexert themselves before they have completely healed, thus triggering more pain.
Various treatments can help alleviate chronic pain. Some treatments do so on a purely physical level by interfering with signals from the nerves to the brain or desensitizing the nerves. The following sections are meant to introduce you to some of the ways of dealing with pain without relying on non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, narcotics, tranquilizers or anti-depressants.
For many people, particularly those in the western world, pain relief solutions such as acupuncture, and herbal medicine are novel concepts. However, the rest of the world is probably wondering what the fuss is about, because these traditional approaches to pain relief have been around for thousands of years; Traditional Chinese Medicine, which relies on various techniques and herbs in order to balance the body’s internal energy, is over 5,000 years old.
Acupuncture: the ancient Chinese Practice of acupuncture is based on the belief that health is determined by the level of chi (vital life energy) that is in t he body. This energy is thought to move through the body through pathways called meridians, which connect to specific organs in the body. Acupuncturists insert needles into points on the body that connect to these channels to release blocked “chi” that might be the cause of pain. During acupuncture treatment, the acupuncturist inserts thin needles for anywhere from a few minutes to a half an hour into specific points on the body. This practice is thought to stimulate endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers and is useful for the treatment of a variety of disorders including backache, sinus pain, jaw pain, spinal disorders, withdrawal and mental disorders.
Herbs: another important part of traditional Chinese medicine is herbal medicine. Herbs have been used for centuries for their pain relieving qualities. Here are some herbs that are recommended for common disorders:
Cramps & Spasms: angelica, cramp bar, kava, rosemary, valerian root.
Nerve Pain: capsaicin, chamomile, gotu kola, licorice, white willow.
Back Pain: hops, wood betony, passionflower.
Migraine: feverfew, linden, skullcap.
Headaches: peppermint, spearmint.
Joint pain: ginger, sea cucumber.
Meditation: meditation, which has also been practiced for thousands of years, is a conscious attempt to calm the mind so that it is not cluttered with thoughts and anxieties that might be contributing to an unnecessary belief in the existence of pain. There are hundreds of different meditation techniques, but mostly they all into three categories: concentrative, mindful and transcendental meditation. During concentrative meditation, focusing on a single sound, object or one’s breath, produces tranquil mind that facilitates the production of pain-relieving endorphins. During mindful meditations, the mind is encouraged to become aware of, but not reactive to thoughts, feelings and sensations in order to achieve a tranquil state of mind.
Nutrition: eating a well balanced diet that includes fresh fruits and vegetables is thought to be the best way raise your pain threshold or resistance to pain. A deficiency in any of the main vitamins (A, B, C, D or E) can cause chronic pain. Vitamin E is used to treat joint pain. A deficiency in calcium, iron, magnesium and other minerals may also lower your pain threshold. A calcium magnesium supplement taken in a 2:1 ratio of calcium to magnesium is thought to relieve joint pain and headaches. Manganese is a vitamin that is sometimes used for chronic headaches and neuralgia. A deficiency of the B vitamins is also thought to cause nervousness, headaches and chronic pain.
Aromatherapy: sniffing or applying essential oils is thought to change an individual’s brain chemistry so that pleasurable neuro-transmitters called endorphins are released to relieve pain. Geranium, jasmine, juniper, lavender, peppermint, rose, rosemary and thyme are oils commonly used for this purpose.
Guided Imagery: research has indicated that bodily functions that were previously thought to be beyond conscious control, such as chronic pain, can be controlled thorough the use of visualization. Guided imagery encourages the sufferer to think in pictures that eliminate negative thoughts thus raising levels of pleasurable brain chemicals, such as serotonin, decreasing anxiety and increasing the effectiveness of the immune system. Through guided imagery, the mind conjures up mental scenes in order to better direct the body’s energy. For instance, if an individual is suffering from a stabbing pain, he or she might want to imagine a knife being removed from the spot and a subsequent glowing feeling of relief. Guided imagery has been used successfully to manage the pain of headaches, sinus problems, arthritis and cancer.
Biofeedback combines a variety of relaxation methods, such as guided imagery and meditation with the use of instruments that monitor the individual’s responses to the therapy. After many treatments, biofeedback is thought to train the individual to consciously regulate autonomic functions such as heart rate, blood pressure and other processes that are commonly believed to be out of our control. During a session, electrodes connected to a monitoring unit are taped to the skin. The monitor measures skin temperature, pulse, blood pressure, muscle tension and brain activity to determine the success of the relaxation technique. Eventually, over time, biofeedback can train an individual to control the pain of such disorders as TMJ, headaches and migraines.
It is difficult to imagine a world without pain; where would our poetry come from? What would divas sing about? Given that pain is probably always going to be a part of our world, it is of critical importance that we understand the various methods that exist to manage that pain. For some of us, that remedy may lie in the traditional realm, while for others it will be through prescription drugs or some other alternative. Regardless of what remedy you choose, make sure you inform yourself of the various pain treatment options open to you, and by doing so, you may just reduce the amount of suffering in your life. And isn’t that, in some respect, the goal that we all strive towards?
It is important to note that the above suggestions do not represent cures for conditions, but more represent strategies and opportunities to manage your chronic pain. It is also recommended that you consult with your health practitioner before embarking on any new pain management program.