Alternative therapies for chronic pain
Since I’ve been suffering from chronic pain, following a spontaneous spinal fracture five years ago, I have tried many alternative remedies and therapies to try and help control my pain. I have tried many things from Aromatherapy to Acupressure, from Reflexology to Reiki; none of them bring my pain levels down to nothing but they have a huge effect on controlling my stress, anxiety and the general ‘scariness‘ of having a chronic pain condition that will last for many years.
The three alternative therapies that I have found have actually have actually helped me are –
Reflexology, Acupressure and Reiki
There are many others for you to try and of course what might works for me, may not work for you so I’m just giving you my honest opinions on therapies that might help me control my pain issues. If there is something else that works for you, let me know…?
Reflexology is an ancient non-invasive complementary therapy which helps healing by touching pressure points on the feet. It is a touch therapy that is based on the theory that different points on the feet, lower leg, hands, face or ears correspond with different areas of the body and reflexologists work these points and areas.
It has been around for centuries and whilst it is often offered in beauty salons, I chose to go and see a certified and registered Reflexologist as I was looking at something that was a bit more official.
First time I went, I was unsure as to what was to happen and I was made very comfortable by the therapist Carol (Something Else Centre), who explained to me exactly what was to happen, She took a full and comprehensive health history from me and wanted a list of all my medications. She then asked me what I was looking to get out of the session and what my major problems were.
Once the consultation was over, she brought me to the treatment room and showed me how to get up onto the bed and then removed my soft shoes. In the background, there was very relaxing music and some lovely aromatherapy candles which also lent itself to a relaxing vibe.
The treatment itself was extremely relaxing. She started with 1 foot, then the other and then did both together and I could feel the pressure being exerted one the points. She asked if I was comfortable with the depth of the pressure and I replied “yes I was” She asked then if she could possibly go a little harder and with my permission, she then applied a lot more pressure. None of it was uncomfortable but I really could feel the deeper pressure and an unexpected result when she applied the deeper pressure to one spot was that I felt so light and sleepy that I almost slept throughout the rest of the session.
Did it work?
Absolutely yes! It’s something that I now have on a regular basis, it has not taken away my pain but it certainly has helped with my ‘dread’, the hard lump of “I don’t want this pain for the rest of my life “ that sits inside me, that has lightened and I really feel that it has helped me cope with my pain. (A totally unexpected but happy result was that it has really helped my constipation! Which as all chronic pain sufferers know, is a massive side effect of all the drugs we’re on! so happy days eh….?)🥴
Acupressure and Reiki
I had these at the same time, with a different therapist, Lisa (The Crystal Haven) Like the Reflexology, I had to lie on the bed and again, there was calming music and candles which again, relaxed me and made me feel like I was in safe hands.
This treatment was similar to Reflexology in that the therapist applied a pressure on certain points but this was applied all over the body and especially the face. Again it wasn’t uncomfortable; but afterwards, I really did feel that I had a sense of ‘lightness‘ and what I could only describe as ‘smiley-ness’!. I felt like I’d been ‘set free‘ mentally.
Reiki was next; Reiki is a form of alternative medicine called energy healing. Reiki practitioners use a technique called palm healing or hands-on healing through which a “universal energy” is said to be transferred through the palms of the practitioner to the patient in order to encourage emotional or physical healing
The ‘hands on’ technique was incorporated through the therapy; it actually felt like her hands were blazing hot, even though I knew she wasn’t touching me with a hot item. She placed her hands above and on my hip and I could feel such strong heat, it was very strange but afterwards I had a definite reduction in pain which then made my weekend a much happier occasion! 😉
So would I recommend these treatments to you?
I can only say that it works for me but what works for me, may not work for you or may not even be suitable for your condition. All I can say is that I have found a great deal of calmness and pain relief from them. Who knows? They might work for you too…..?
(As always, speak to your health care provider before you embark on a new treatment, just to check)