Have you ever experienced pain without fully understanding where it comes from, or why?
The most irritating kind of pain is the kind that isn’t so serious that you’d need a doctor immediately, but is just enough to throw you off your game. This type of pain may be the result of an injury you didn’t realize you had, or small tears in your muscles after strenuous exercise or sports, or even just not drinking enough water.
Whatever the reason, you’re likely to deem these types of physical ailments as “not worth the price of a hospital visit.” It doesn’t make sense for you to just grin and bear the pain, either, so the next best thing is to figure out what you can safely and realistically do to ease your aches.
This is where alternative remedies come in. While some experts frown upon ‘self-medication’, there’s actually a ton of scientific evidence out there supporting the idea of applying effective remedies that are so simple, you can easily do them at home.
Let’s take a look at six of the easiest (and most inexpensive) ways you can remedy your body aches.
1. Using a Cold Compress
There’s a reason why the cold compress is a perennial favorite when it comes to quick and easy alternative remedies. It’s simple to use; all you have to do is fill it with ice, hold it up to or place it on the affected area for 10 minutes, repeat a couple of times, and you’re done.
It’s effective because it essentially numbs the affected area due to its cold temperature. By reducing the nerve activity in the spot where you feel the ache, it provides temporary (albeit welcome) relief until the ache goes away or until you heal completely. This has been tested on patients with all sorts of body pain, and it has so far proven to be as effective as it is efficient.
2. Using Apple Cider Vinegar
For something that smells so unpleasant, apple cider vinegar is surprisingly helpful and effective. In addition to resolving muscle soreness and joint pain, apple cider vinegar has also been proven its usefulness in a wide assortment of health problems, as well as in losing weight and lowering cholesterol levels and other heart disease risk factors.
There are three ways you can use apple cider vinegar as a simple home remedy.
- The first, and by far the most common, is by straight-up drinking it. Some can stomach drinking it in a single go without any additives, but for other would-be drinkers with more selective and delicate palates, apple cider can be consumed alongside fruit juice or honey.
- The second way is to take some vinegar and rub it right on the affected area until the pain subsides.
- Lastly, you also have the option to mix it in with your bathwater, allowing your skin to absorb it as you sit in your tub. You’ll smell a bit...vinegary but it’s a small sacrifice for the relief it provides.
3. Body Massage Sticks
Massage sticks or self-massage sticks are muscle rollers used before or after exercise. They’re great for physical therapy and many would say they provide similar relief to that of a professional massage. They come in portable sizes and are recommended by physical therapists, massage therapists, personal trainers, and even professional athletes.
Massage sticks can be used on nearly any area of the body to not just relieve sore muscles, but to also lengthen and strengthen them. They can be utilized to stretch and break fascial adhesions, apply trigger-point massage, and provide relief from IT Band, Arthritis, and even Carpal Tunnel syndrome. To use, you simply grip both ends firmly, roll the stick-up and down or across the affected muscles while applying just the right amount of pressure with your arms.
When looking to buy massage sticks for the first time, make sure they’re made with quality materials to provide good fascia connective tissue penetration with each use.
From the name itself, you would guess cupping involves, well, cups. The principle behind cupping involves placing cups on the skin which then provides suction. This suction helps increase blood flow, as well as reduce swelling or inflammation while activating lymphatic drainage. It works by “refreshing” the blood circulation in a specific area of your body and improving the overall process.
Cupping is said to be useful in resolving a variety of ailments. It also happens to be quite relaxing, which explains how it relieves muscle pain.
Nowadays, learning how to do cupping at home isn’t all that hard. In fact, there are online resources that teach you how to do cupping on your own properly. The key is to choose cups that are highly durable, anti-microbial, and made of strong yet flexible and effective material, such as silicone (as opposed to the typical breakable glass, or traditional fire and glass cupping jars). If you have questions or would like to know more about cupping, you can check out the community here.
Don’t brush off the idea just yet — meditation does actually work!.
As a matter of fact, a group of researchers who did a study on patients with chronic pain found focused meditation actually gave them more pain relief, a lower level of anxiety and depression, and a generally more pleasant and focused disposition.
Meditation can be as simple as sitting down, closing your eyes, and staying quiet. All it really requires is a clear mind.
6. Essential Oils
Last on our list are essential oils. You probably know the benefits of essential oils (and why so many people swear by them), but they have other functions outside being good for your face and skin. One of them is making muscle pain go away. Some of the really effective essential oils for this purpose are chamomile, coconut oil, lavender oil, and olive oil.
Have you tried some of the remedies on the list? What are some other types of remedies you would recommend for body aches and pain? Tell us in the comments below!