When you experience pain of any type, it can be enough to drive you to reach for some acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
Here we explore different natural ways to alleviate pain without having to resort to over-the-counter medications.
Massage involves rubbing, manipulating and pressing on a person’s skin, ligaments and tendons. Generally, massage therapy is considered as part of alternative and complementary medicine. According to the Mayo Clinic, massage can benefit the body in many ways and might be helpful for pain due to; fibromyalgia, headaches, myofascial pain syndrome, paresthesia and nerve pain, temporomandibular joint pain, soft tissue and sports injuries. 
Many people can experience pain relief from massage, but if you have a bleeding disorder, take blood thinners or have fractures, severe osteoporosis, deep vein thrombosis, severe thrombocytopenia, you should discuss massage with your doctor to make sure it is safe.
Acupuncture is a technique which involves using needles on certain points of the body and it is one of the practices used in traditional Chinese medicine. Research studies have suggested acupuncture may help alleviate types of pain that are often chronic in nature such as osteoarthritis, knee pain, lower back pain and neck pain. 
If you are considering the use of acupuncture for relieving pain, it is important to find a skilled and credited practitioner. You should not use acupuncture in place of regular medical treatment and you should discuss your acupuncture treatments with your regular physician to see if it would benefit you.
If you have chronic back pain, you may be able to find pain relief through practicing yoga. The human back performs different movements like stretching upwards, moving forward and backward and twisting. People can experience back pain from obesity, standing or sitting for long periods of time, sitting or standing with incorrect posture, weak back muscles, lack of exercise or due to some type of injury.
Through exploring different yoga poses, you can find a routine which will allow you to alleviate chronic back pain and strengthen your core. You should not restrict yourself to only doing certain poses, you should pay attention to all parts of your body and consulting with a yoga teacher may be quite helpful. Other benefits of adding yoga poses to your daily routine include; toning and massaging the pancreas, stomach, small intestines, kidneys, gall bladder and liver. 
4. Pressure points for pain relief
We have pressure points throughout our body. When pressure points are manipulated in certain ways, it can offer pain relief for people of all ages. Acupressure is very similar to acupuncture, but without needles. There are nine different pressure points on the body which have different functions:
- Forehead: Messaging the pressure point between the eyes can help relieve headache pain and pressure due to eye strain. Stroking the area with your thumb or index finger for one to two minutes will relieve a headache or strain pain.
- Neck pain: A lot of people experience pain due to tension in the neck. The pressure point on your neck can be felt by creating a “V” with your index and middle finger and running it up and down your neck. Squeezing with the thumb on top, in an upward manner for two minutes can help reduce neck pain.
- Back: Back pain is something many people deal with on a daily basis. Lower back pain is often more common than pain in the upper back. There is a pressure point on your ankle and by finding it and applying light pressure; you can eliminate pains and aches in the back.
- Lower leg: The lower leg is another area of the body that has several pressure points. Pressure points here are located behind the knee and there is another on the top of the calf muscle.
- Stomach pain: When bothered by stomach pain, you can rub the side of your foot with your thumb, just above the arch. Rubbing this pressure point can alleviate stomach pain and can help aid in the digestive process.
- Cramps: For people with cramps, stimulating the pressure points in the body can provide relief. You can apply light pressure to the area between the big toe and second toe with your thumb for a period of one to two minutes and it will provide relief from cramps.
Getting to know the pressure points on your body is very beneficial because it can provide relief from various aches and pains. Although it might take you a bit of time to familiarize yourself with your pressure points, in time you can master the skill. Another option for people is to visit with someone trained and familiar with the use of acupressure for pain control.
Hypnosis is a set of techniques used to enhance concentration, heighten responsiveness and minimize ones distractions. The key to becoming hypnotized depends on the person’s willingness to be hypnotized. Research has proven hypnosis works well on different psychological and medical conditions.  People who are more receptive to hypnosis were found to benefit most from the technique and experienced relief of acute pain. 
Meditation is focused on different mind-body techniques which use thought and relaxation techniques to ease someone’s stress, pain, anxiety and insomnia. Approximately 20 million people in America practice some type of mediation according to a 2007 National Institutes of Health survey.  Meditation practices can be done by yourself or it can be performed in groups that are led by a heath practitioner. The techniques include the following:
- Contemplative walking: Very common in Japan and Buddhist tradition. Taking a walk will clear the mind, promotes circulation and gives a person time to contemplate on the world around them.
- Deep breathing techniques: Deep breathing exercises can help with oxygen circulation and promote relaxation, making it easier to handle pain.
- Guided imagery: Using guided imagery helps a person concentrate on positive images or scenes and takes the focus off of the pain a person is experiencing.
- Cognitive behavioral therapy: This involves speaking to a therapist about different emotional issues and focusing on positive thoughts and activities.
- Yoga-based mediation: Yoga-based meditation involves doing various yoga poses while deeply focusing on breathing and mediation techniques.
- Chanting or using mantras: When using chanting or mantras a person will repeat certain words or phrases, which are designed to promote relaxation.
7. Tai Chi
A medical research study was performed and examined the benefits of Tai Chi in regards to pain from osteoarthritis, lower back pain, headaches, fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis. Tai Chi contributes to the management of chronic pain in three ways, through mind-body interaction, adaptive exercise and meditation. It was found Tai Chi is an effective intervention in fibromyalgia, lower back pain and osteoarthritis. 
8. Herbal remedies
Some people living with chronic arthritis pain find relief in the use of herbal remedies. According to the American College of Rheumatology, herbal remedies promoted for relieving arthritis pain include; ginger, stinging nettle, Chinese Thunder God Vine, feverfew, willow bark extract and cat’s claw. 
Prescription painkillers and over-the-counter pain relievers may bring many unwanted side effects. For those who suffer from chronic pain, discovering alternative methods for relief can be beneficial. If you do not wish to rely solely on pharmaceuticals alone to relieve your chronic pain, it may be worth speaking to your doctor about natural pain management options to find out which ones would work best for you.
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