Katoomba Remedial Massage

Mobile Massage for Mid to Upper Blue Mountains

Tips for Pain Relief

Treat pain asap
If the pain is intense go to the doctor or pharmacist and discuss with them appropriate pain medication and treatment options.
Not treating intense pain quickly can increase the chance of suffering long term pain, because the brain remembers pain too well.
In addition, surrounding muscles can respond to injury by tensing up, this can lead to muscle cramps, additional pain and reduced movement.

Cold packs
Icing an injury immediately used to be the standard advice, because it was seen to help reduce excessive inflammation.  Now it's thought it might delay healing, since inflammation is the first stage of the healing process.  However if it's nothing serious and you want to avoid a bruise, short periods of icing can be useful.  Make sure to wrap the ice or icepack, in a cloth and only apply it for a few minutes, just to take the heat out of the area.  Ice packs or a wet cloth can also be useful for itches, burns and feelings of burning pain.

Warm packs
These can be useful for muscle spasms, tight muscles and dull aches.  You can use a covered hot water bottle, heat pack or one use heat strip.  The heat strips are available from pharmacies and supermarkets, they are stuck onto the body and can last up to 8hrs.  Putting a wet towel around a hot water bottle can increase the heat transfer.

Reduce inflammation
Reducing inflammation can reduce pain.  Elevating a swollen foot, hand or knee can help with swelling.  Aspirin and ibuprofen might also help, but be careful to follow the usage directions, especially if you've had stomach ulcers or liver problems.

Pain can come from tight muscles
There are many nerves in our body which tell our brain about pain.  Where muscles are too tight or blood flow is constricted, the nerves can be irritated, sending pain signals to the brain.  Sometimes the pain if felt in the obvious area of tightness, but other times there might be referred pain to a wider area, making it hard to know what is the source of the pain.  Gentle dynamic stretching, PNF stretching, self massage, a warm shower, or a changing your work station setup, can help to reduce muscle tightness.

Don't stop moving because of pain
If your doctor says it is ok to resume light duties, then try to move about, don't become immobile because of pain.  If your pain medication isn't working enough to allow you to move about, then talk to your doctor.  Returning to normal movement helps your body to recover, and your mind to register that the body is recovering.  Inactivity, and keeping a limb or the torso rigid, can create it's own pain.  It's better to regularly move, as this promotes good blood flow and keeps nerves gliding freely.  When the pain is sharp, you might have to learn to move slowly, this often alleviates those sharp jolts of pain.  As your body gets comfortable with those slow safe movements, it will gradually be able to speed up to a more normal pace.