How to Live Without Advil: Alternative Pain Management

Since I nearly died, I haven’t been able to take ibuprofen. Taking the drug (or any NSAIDs/steroids) could bring back my illness, so I’ve needed to manage without it. I used to take ibuprofen like it was candy for headaches and period cramps. However, since changing my diet, I’ve had barely any headaches at all. Still, here’s a quick and dirty guide to living without ibuprofen (for all you junkies out there).

What causes pain?
A number of things can cause pain, including serious illnesses in which case you may need to seek help from a functional doctor. However, 90% of the time (not a real statistic), random pain is caused by inflammation in the body. Drugs such as ibuprofen limit inflammation, block receptors, and reduce fevers to eliminate pain. However, fevers and inflammation are ways the body heals itself. Inflammation (most of the time) = healing. Using an NSAID to ease pain can hinder healing in the long run. Trauma, uterine contractions, pregnancy, mental disorders, and other things can cause pain in the body.

Headaches:

For headaches, take a magnesium supplement. Threonate works best and chloride is second best (also most common). Try smelling peppermint essential oils. Drinking peppermint tea (or any tea) can help as well. Many headaches are caused by lack of sleep, dehydration, sugar intake, or a side effect from drugs. Therefore, taking a nap, drinking a glass of water, avoiding sugar, and avoiding drugs such as aspartame (present in sugar-free gums, soda, juice, etc) will help. Cayenne and shea butter mixture on your forehead may also help, but it only helps by forcing your brain to focus on the pain the cayenne pepper is causing the skin on your forehead.

Period cramps:
Drink tea! Certain teas such as dandelion root and peppermint can help with bloating and pain. Take some black cohosh. Black cohosh makes your uterus contract more efficiently, and therefore will stop the cause of the pain: poor uterine contractions. A heating pad (or small animal that wants to curl up in your lap) will help bring blood to the uterus which will also help ease pain. If none of those work, take a nap! Naps always help by restarting your body. You can also use a marijuana suppository if you are in a state/country in which they are legal and you have the means.

Muscle pain:
Whether your muscle pain is from injury or working out (which is still technically injury by definition), magnesium chloride will help a ton. Use a magnesium oil spray, take an epsom salt bath, or take magnesium orally to ease pain in your muscles after a long day/solid workout. Take magnesium daily to minimize these effects. Don’t think it will work? Try it. Dark chocolate and dark, leafy greens are also very high in magnesium in case you don’t want to take a supplement.

Skin Injury:
For these, you can add aloe vera or honey to the injured skin to ease pain/itching. If you have an open wound, use dragon’s blood as a natural second skin (dragon’s blood is a type of sap). Take magnesium orally, but do not use mag oil or take an epsom salt bath with any kind of skin lesion.

Neuropathy:
For neuropathy, not much can help the pain caused by damaged nerves. However, evening primrose oil can help. Try cannabid oil or a marijuana-infused spray on the affected area. Smoking medical marijuana may be able to help as well. Take important supplements that help repair your nervous system such as Alpha Lipoic Acid, Acetyl L-Carnitine, Magnesium L-Threonate, B-12 complex, and good fats.

In General:

For any type of pain, drink water, take magnesium, take a nap, or smoke marijuana. Overall, try to take care of yourself. If nothing works, try to deal with the pain. Dealing with pain can be very freeing. I used to deal with pain immediately by popping a few Advil. I used to keep a bottle in my car, in my house, and in my purse. Now that I’ve changed my life, I feel stronger for not needing this crutch whenever I felt any type of pain. Plus, I’m saving a ton of money.



Photo credit: agoramedia.com

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