Opioids are substances that reproduce morphine-like effects and help in numbing down sensations. They are often used for pain relief purposes, such as anesthesia. Majorly, they are used in the treatment of chronic pain. They are essential for palliative purposes. For instance, cancer patients are often treated with opioids to soothe severe pain. Even people with rheumatoid arthritis and chronic back pain are treated with opioids. Their use is also extended in other medical fields, such as the treatment of diarrhea and intense coughing. 

It is plain to see the astonishing range of their application. However, it is essential to know that opioids are not always the best option for treatment. If misused, it can have severe effects on your nervous system. They are heavily abused because of its euphoric results, and that can harm your body severely.

Today, there are several non-opioid medicines such as ibuprofen (Motrin), acetaminophen (Tylenol), aspirin (Bayer), and steroids are available today. Some patients opt for non-drug therapies. So, let us now look at the natural, safe, and effective alternatives to opioid treatment for relieving pain that can do wonders:

  1. Physical Therapy: Physical therapy often involves a set of an exercise program that is explicitly designed by the physician after assessing the patient’s medical report. This is one of the oldest techniques of relieving pain and one of the most effective without and side effects. People with chronic back pain and knee pain often opt for physical therapy because of its heavy reliance on using body weight and body exercises. 
  2. Acupuncture: In treatment, thin needles are inserted at different points in our skin that stress the acupoints in our body that helps to relieve pain. The origins of acupuncture can be traced back to Asia, specifically in China and India. It works on the principle of stressing on some ‘acupoints’ that causes the release of endorphins. Endorphins are bodily produced pain relief chemicals that are influential in killing the pain. At the same time, the brain releases serotonin that governs our mood. Along with the treatment of chronic pain relief and headaches, they also help in treating tendinitis, arthritis, respiratory disorders, skin problems, and digestive disorders.
  3. Chiropractic Therapy: Chiropractic therapy makes use of hands-on spinal treatment for healing and pain relief. They rely on the idea that with the help of accurate alignment of the body’s spine will help the body to relieve pain and heal itself without depending on any modern surgery or medication. The spinal treatment also helps in recovering joints that are often disturbed by wounded tissues caused due to falling and sitting inappropriately. This method is mostly considered as a safe and effective alternative for managing pain relief of muscles, joints, bones, and connective tissues. 
  4. Yoga: Yoga is one of the oldest mental, physical, and spiritual exercise practices. It can be traced way back to ancient India. Based on a thorough study by some of the earliest sages, today, there are lots of yoga exercises practiced all over the world that help relaxes and relieve pain. 
    1. Breathing exercise: Some of them involve simple relaxation practices such as foursquare breathing exercises. It involves inhaling to the count of four, holding the breath to the count of four and exhaling to the count of four.
    2. Visualized meditation: In this technique, you take deep and slow breaths while imagining a peaceful and serene scene. You can imagine details such as colors, smells, sounds, and pay attention to your feelings. 
    3. Mindful meditation: In this technique, you lie down on the floor with your palms facing the ground and notice the breathing without controlling it. During this phase, you are bound to get thoughts and feel pain. All you must do is see them and let them pass. After thorough practice, you will find it easier to detach yourself from anxiety and thoughts.

These are a few of the vast arrays of techniques taught in yoga. Yoga is possibly the most natural way of healing yourself and achieves a spiritual resolution of the pain. It helps you treat chronic back and knee pain and arthritis pain. Along with this, it is also a perfect treatment for depression, anxiety, and stress.

The US has seen a staggering growth of 50% of the rise in Yoga practice in the last eight years, with nearly 36 million Americans practicing yoga. This general acceptance of the techniques is itself enough to prove its high efficiency in the treatment of pain relief.

 

  1. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: This involves talk-therapy that guides the patient and helps identify the negative thoughts and behavior associated with the pain. CBT works on the philosophy that humans contribute to their own experiences and feelings, which include pain as well. So, by helping people to change their negative emotions and thoughts, they can restructure their awareness of their pain and sensations that eventually helps in developing active coping mechanisms. Hence, even if the pain is intense, the individual has better-coping skills to deal with the pain.

The treatments listed above are the most natural, safe, and effective antidotes to chronic pain. More and more Americans are opting for these techniques over opioid therapy as they find a long-term solution to their pain without any side-effects.