Are These Natural Pain Relievers Right For You?

If you're living with chronic pain, you may have already tried the usual treatments. Natural relievers could be your key to success, but which one is right for your pain?

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1.TENS: TENS, or transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, is an alternative pain relief therapy that uses a low-voltage electrical current to stimulate nerve fibers. It is especially used to treat musculoskeletal pain, such as muscle and joint pain.

Who should not use it? Children, pregnant women or anyone with an implanted electronic or metallic device should not use TENS. To use the TENS machine, proper training is required. Always consult your doctor before trying an alternative therapy.

2. Ginger: Ginger is a great natural pain reliever and may help with muscle and joint pain. It contains natural compounds that help your body fight inflammation. To try this remedy, add half a teaspoon of powdered ginger to hot water and drink it twice a day.

Who should avoid it? Avoid ginger if you have an allergy to ginger or a related plant, if you have a bleeding disorder or are using anticoagulant or antiplatelet medication, and prior to surgery. People with inflammatory bowel disease should avoid large quantities of fresh-cut ginger. The safety of ginger for children has not been well studied. Use ginger cautiously if you are diabetic, as it may contribute to low blood sugar, if you are pregnant or if you suffer from stomach or intestinal ulcers.

3. Arnica Gel: Arnica gel has been used for hundreds of years to soothe muscle aches and reduce inflammation.

How should you use it safely? Arnica gel is meant for external use only. Avoid contact with eyes, mucous membranes, broken skin or open wounds. When used long term it may cause skin irritation. If your pain continues longer than three days or worsens, consult your doctor. If it is swallowed, contact a poison control center immediately as it may cause illness or be fatal. Keep out of reach of children.

Who should not use it? Anyone with an allergy to the arnica plant should avoid it. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding and children should avoid it unless directed otherwise by a doctor.