Facts About Osteopathic Pain Management

There are many ways on how to relieve pain. Of course, no one would like to live in pain. Most of the time, you would not want surgery to be an option. Also, popping pills along with the different types of medication may not always be the best course of treatment. So what then is the best way on how to manage pain?Osteopathic Medicine – A Holistic Approach To PainToday, osteopathic medicine is becoming one of the most efficient ways on how to treat pain, most especially chronic pain. As opposed to the conventional medicine that will solely rely on pain pills or perhaps invasive surgery, osteopathic pain management will make use of a wide range of natural techniques. And this will include craniosacral rhythm, exercise therapy, therapeutic ultrasound, muscle contraction and stretching, myofascial release, and a host of other manipulative treatments.You must be aware that the key to osteopathic medicine is its underlying philosophy, which is actually based on 4 tenets – that the individual is a unit of mind, body and spirit; that the body is very much capable of health maintenance, self-healing, and self-regulation; that its structure as well as function are interrelated; and that the most logical treatment to certain illnesses would be to fully understand the above-mentioned principles.How It Works?Managing pain through osteopathy will mean treating the whole body, not only the symptoms. Furthermore, it will work on the musculoskeletal system as key to your recovery as well as overall health. It will not just address the physiological aspects of your pain; rather, it looks to the psychosocial aspects and identifies bodily dysfunction. Indeed, when this is combined with osteopathic philosophy, your osteopath will be capable of delivering a well-rounded as well as efficient treatment to whatever kind of pain you are currently experiencing.Most health experts will say that osteopathy is a very effective and safe way of treating chronic pain. Its goal is not to remove pain but to restore function of the structure and systems of your body. In turn, this will allow your body to heal itself. You must know that in doing so, the pain issues will be resolved, and you might even boost the efficient use of your body.You must be aware that this kind of therapy will treat neck and back pains, joint injuries, migraines, sports injuries, and arthritis. Also, it can be used to treat pre- and post-natal problems. There are indeed a couple of studies showing that this kind of therapy provided favorable results to most patients and subjects. With that said, the next time you experience low back pain or perhaps migraine, considering calling or booking an appointment with a reliable osteopath.

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New Opioid Regulations: Pros, Cons and Alternative Pain Management

In response to the 100,000 opioid overdose-related deaths in the past decade, along with the increasing rise in heroin use and deaths associated with initial opioid pain-killer addiction, federal regulations came into effect this week to tighten controls on medications containing hydrocodone. Hydrocodone is a synthetic opioid, and is one of the active ingredients found in several prescription pain-killers, including Vicodin, Norco and Lortab. (Drugs containing natural opiates like codeine are not included under the new regulations.)Opioids manipulate the way that the brain processes pain signals. They work on the reward system in a way that can result in feelings of euphoria, accounting for much of the medications’ addictive potential.The new guidelines essentially require physicians to consciously renew their decision to prescribe opioids to a patient on a more regular basis. The changes now in place include:

Prescriptions are limited to a 30-day supply

No refills – new prescription required each month

Only doctors can write prescriptions, and these must be handwritten on paper rather than faxed or called in
While there are potential loopholes to these regulations – doctors may post-date prescriptions to provide a 90-day supply, and emergency prescriptions in case of injury may be called in – pharmacies are not required to honor such exceptions.Pros and ConsOpponents point out that people who legitimately use these medications to improve quality of life and alleviate debilitating pain may have difficulty obtaining medication under the new guidelines, particularly if they have mobility or transportation issues. They argue that the regulations are particularly unfair to people with pain caused by cancer and other life-threatening conditions, and that a few bad apples, essentially, are spoiling it for the whole bunch.Proponents, however, point out that these drugs are prescribed en masse to people with non-cancer pain caused by conditions like fibromyalgia, chronic back pain and headache for which long-term use of the drugs has not been proven effective; the American Academy of Neurology cites research that shows half of patients who use opioid pain-killers for three months end up still using them five years later.See more on the new regulations and arguments for and against at http://psychologyofpain.blogspot.com/2014/10/after-new-federal-rules-popular.html.Alternative Pain ManagementIt’s important for people with chronic pain to beef up their supply of non-narcotic pain management methods. The following should be considered:Ibuprofen/NSAIDs: These anti-inflammatory medications may help manage non-cancer pain, and are available both over-the-counter and by prescription. It should be noted that these medications are not without risk; they can lead to gastrointestinal problems, cardiovascular risk and kidney problems. Heavy or prolonged used should be pursued with caution (if at all), and patients who drink alcohol should be especially wary.Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: This form of psychotherapy has time and again proven useful in managing pain and disability. In sessions, patients work to identify maladjusted thoughts, attitudes and beliefs about pain, replacing them with more accurate and constructive cognitions.Exercise: Exercise is beneficial to overall well-being, and often for pain management specifically. Along with strengthening muscles and improving the circulation of oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood to the body’s tissues, exercise releases endorphins that act as natural pain-killers. For those who are afraid of pain caused by movement, graded exercise – in which the intensity of physical activity is gradually increased under the guidance of a physical therapist – can be immensely beneficial.Myofascial Release: Some cases of chronic back pain, fibromyalgia and migraine can be helped by a form of massage called myofascial release. This is especially helpful to patients whose pain is related to chronic muscle tension.Acupuncture: The body of research in support of acupuncture’s effectiveness in treating pain for many conditions is ever-growing.Relaxation Techniques: Anxiety and stress have an amplifying effect on physical pain. Meditation, breathing techniques, guided imagery and other forms of relaxation training can help mitigate pain.Pain patients who may be affected by the new regulations of opioid medication are not left without resources for chronic pain management. Many of the alternative options above may be covered by health insurance. Discuss the possibility of expanding your pain management repertoire with a specialist, doctor or physical therapist.

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