In recent years, the medical community started to realize the many benefits of a holistic approach to pain management. The medical definition of “holistic” is treatment of the whole person, including mental and social factors in addition to symptoms of a disease. In other words, management and relief of chronic pain – no matter the cause – is approached from a variety of disciplines that take into account all contributing factors affecting the patient’s well-being.
A holistic approach to pain management often requires the use of various alternative therapies to achieve a positive outcome. These may include:
Diet and Nutrition
Carbohydrates, preservatives, additives, and processed food all contribute to inflammation that causes painful flare-ups. Assessing and gradually amending your diet with organic and fresh fruits and vegetables can have the opposite effect, reducing your chronic pain.
This holistic method has been used for thousands of years to relieve symptoms of chronic pain, especially in the lower back. It has also been proven beneficial for those with chronic neck pain. Massage benefits physical health and also promotes mental well-being by allowing you to disconnect from daily stress.
This ancient, noninvasive Chinese healing technique involves stimulating specific areas of the body with extremely fine, sterile needles. It promotes natural healing to help relieve back, shoulder, arm, and wrist pain. This makes acupuncture a beneficial treatment option for conditions such as arthritis, bursitis, tennis elbow, carpal tunnel syndrome, and post-surgery pain, as well as painful abdominal conditions like gastroenteritis and ulcerative colitis.
This noninvasive technique involves the use of electrical sensors to provide feedback about body functions, such as heart rate, temperature, sweating, and blood pressure. This information can be used to make changes in those functions, thereby improving overall health. For example, biofeedback can teach you to relax certain muscles, to reduce stress-related chronic pain or gastrointestinal issues.
Yoga and Meditation
Numerous studies have found that these physical, mental, and spiritual exercises decrease pain sensitivity, improve flexibility, and increase general functionality, making yoga and meditation ideal for people with chronic conditions.
Movement Therapy (Tai Chi)
The ancient mind and body practice of tai chi combines specific postures, controlled breathing, and gentle breathing with deep mental focus. This improves your mindfulness, which can help relieve symptoms of fibromyalgia and other chronic pain conditions.
With water-based therapy, patients are guided through specific exercises in a pool or use a spa with jets that massage key muscle groups. These activities provide relief from conditions such as chronic back pain. Although the effects of hydrotherapy may not be long-lasting, they can be complemented with other treatment options to achieve long-term benefits.
Expert Pain Management in Texas
These are just some of the many holistic pain management options available to those dealing with chronic pain issues. At Balcones Pain Consultants, we believe there is no one approach to long-term pain management, which is why we utilize both traditional and holistic methods to address the individual needs of each patient.
Our goal is to help you live as pain-free as possible. To schedule an appointment with Balcones Pain Consultants, call us at (512) 834-4141 or use our Online Appointment Request Form.