Pain

Everyone experiences pain at some time. It might be the result of an injury, operation, or pushing your body too hard. Headache, infection, arthritis, and other health problems cause pain. Unchecked, pain can rob you of the ability to sleep, work, and enjoy life. It can also lead to depression and anxiety.

We've come a long way from the days of "grin and bear it," or "no pain, no gain." Pain begets pain, so it's important to stop it early. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to pain relief. Standard medications can be a good option for many pain sufferers, but a wide range of effective nondrug therapies are also available.

Pain Articles

Avoiding a pain in the neck

Nearly 21 million women live with neck pain. The problem is typically caused by arthritis and degenerative disk disease, and accentuated by poor posture, declining muscle strength, stress, and a lack of sleep. The best treatment for neck pain is a combination of aerobic exercise, strength training, and stretching exercises. Ergonomic improvements such as keeping a computer monitor at eye level and putting a tablet reader at a 45° angle can also help prevent neck pain.   (Locked) More »

Acupuncture relieves common types of chronic pain

Acupuncture relieves chronic pain in the back, neck, and shoulders, and from osteoarthritis and headaches. Acupuncture is often used in addition to standard treatments, such as pain medications, when they do not relieve pain well enough. (Locked) More »

Alternative treatments for knee pain

When considering alternative treatments to avoid a knee replacement, not all therapies are proven effective at reducing knee pain. The best treatments are weight loss and physical therapy, which relieve pressure on the knee joint. Supplements such as glucosamine and chondroitin, and therapies such as acupuncture and viscosupplementation, can be effective in some people. There is not enough evidence to show that platelet-rich plasma therapy (PRP) and prolotherapy are effective. Prolotherapy and viscosupplementation carry a risk of infection. (Locked) More »

Fool your brain, reduce your pain

You can help relieve chronic pain by distracting your brain. If you have a demanding enough task, you’ll have less attention to give to your pain. Distractions may release natural painkillers that block incoming pain signals as they enter the spinal cord. Distractions can include memory games or any activity so pleasurable or meaningful that it distracts you from your pain. And you don’t have to choose just one activity. Using your brain to do more things that are rewarding tips the balance away from pain. (Locked) More »

Prevent pain from computer use

Holding a tablet computer too low in your lap can force the vertebrae and the muscles in your neck to bend forward too much, causing strain and even injuries to muscles, nerves, tendons, ligaments, and spinal discs. However, a new study from the Harvard School of Public Health finds that viewing a tablet on a table, propped at a steep angle in a tablet case, reduces neck strain and potential pain. You should also change your sitting position every 15 minutes. When using a laptop or desktop computer, sit up straight with your head level and the top of your monitor just below eye level. More »

When headaches won't go away

Migraines are a particularly disabling form of headache because they launch a four-tiered attack—the prodrome (or preheadache), aura (flashing lights or other visual phenomena), actual migraine, and “headache hangover.” Researchers still aren’t sure exactly what causes migraines, but women are three times more likely to get migraine headaches than men, in part because of the hormone estrogen. Treatments such as triptans, blood pressure drugs, and antidepressants, as well as newer therapies like Botox and alternative remedies, can help with chronic migraines. More »