You are not alone!

According to http://www.painmed.org/ an estimated 100 Million Americans deal with some sort of chronic pain.  That is a HUGE number and of course a large percentage of those are back, neck and joint issues.  In addition the use of pain medications has gone through the roof since 1991!  According to www.drugabuse.gov the number of prescriptions written for pain killing opiiates has increased from 76 million/year in 1991, to 207 million/year in 2013.

That is a staggering increase, so whats the rub?  It could be a variety of different reasons.  Easier access to prescription drugs, a wider acceptance of use, marketing efforts of drug companies, or a multitude of other factors.  While this article is not intended as medical advice in any way, shape, or form, it is meant to help the public understand what else may help with the chronic pain outside of operations and prescriptions.  While these are of course needed in many different circumstances, there are things that can be done to help address these problems as a starting point before going the more accepted and traditional route.

Exercise – but you knew that right?

Seems for every health problem there is, exercise is always on the list of things to do.  Let’s be honest with busy schedules, most of us don’t make this a priority, but it is one of the best routes to a life with less pain.  So as always the choice is yours, but a routine of low impact exercise can help keep you limber and in turn be in less pain in a more natural way.  Here are some great examples of low impact exercises and what I like to call “Sedentary exercises” to do while watching TV or reading to help with your exercise goals.  Again this is not intended as professional medical advice and your particular situation could be aggravated with incorrect exersise choices, so we always encourage those with a problem to seek medical advice before making major life changes.

Low Impact exercises:

(source: http://www.webmd.com/)

  • Cat-Camel Stretch
  • Single Leg Stand
  • Speed Drill
  • Squats with alternate reach
  • Step Ups
  • Seated Hamstring stretch :

Sedentary Exercises

(source: www.fitwatch.com)

  • Fidget while you watch your shows.
  • Move your exercise equipment in front of the TV
  • Set up a circuit training route in front of your TV
  • See how many pushups you can do during a show or commercial
  • Do lunges while you watch TV
  • Walk in place as you catch up on your favorite show
  • See how many squats you can do

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other Useful Tips:

1536718Heat and Cold:

Heat and cold can help with a variety of different issues but must be used properly.  While there are a vaiety of different options the best options depend on the person and the situation.  Here are some general guidelines.

  • See a doctor fist (notice a theme there 🙂
  • Heat:  Short periods for everyday pain management
  • Cold:  Best for acute pain and lasting injuries (heat may hurt in this instance)
  • If you are not sure – don’t do it!

1405098Weight:

The word diet is so last year :)….but maintain a healthy weight has a number of health benefits including a serious amount of reduced stress on your joints.  There are a variety of different options out there but here is the DWO take on what a successful program should look like.

  • Dr. Supervised – no late night TV nonsense
  • Slow but steady – loosing weight too fast is not healthy or sustainable
  • Realistic – no starvation diets
  • Long lasting – there are options for quick results but make sure they are lasting and healthy (back to bullet 1).

1441596Stretching:

Many of us are guilty of not staying flexible, which can cause us to get our of sorts quickly.  Implementing a simple stretching routing for 10 minutes a day can really make a difference.  Our recommendations include:

  • Start slow and work your way up
  • Get a Dr. or medical professionals input first
  • If it hurts – don’t do it
    • no pain no gain does not apply here!
  • Always before and after excersise