Living with chronic pain can be excruciating. The pain may be so bad for some people that they cannot go a day without medical intervention. Unfortunately, that brings in a whole new set of problems, such as drug dependency. Drug-free alternatives for pain management may help avoid the possibility of addiction. One alternative that experts are exploring is yoga.
In a recent guideline for treating chronic or recurring back pain, The American College of Physicians recommended yoga as an effective means of managing chronic and recurring pain.
What Is Yoga?
Yoga is a discipline that originated in India. It incorporates a series of physical postures, breathing techniques, and meditation to create harmony in the mind, body, and spirit. As a result, the practitioner is left with a feeling of deep relaxation at the end of the session.
As an exercise, yoga movements, also known as “asanas,” can help strengthen and stretch the muscles. Yoga has grown in popularity in the United States and is being practiced by many people of all ages and genders. What distinguishes yoga from other exercises is the importance given to mental fitness, as well as to physical fitness.
How Does Yoga Help Manage Pain?
Chronic pain not only affects the sufferer physically but mentally and emotionally, as well. Because of this, yoga’s holistic approach has been more effective in managing pain than methodologies that focus only on physical symptoms. According to a recent study, yoga is a feasible way to alleviate the multiple facets of pain that people suffer. Furthermore, participants of the study found yoga to have significantly improved their pain and its management.
The study concluded that yoga not only reduces back pain but can also help with other types of chronic pain, such as fibromyalgia, migraines, and arthritis.
In addition, yoga was found to reduce chronic pain by:
- Improving overall mobility
- Increasing strength, balance, and flexibility
- Reducing stress
- Improving psychological and emotional well-being
- Promoting complete relaxation
Other research that showed the positive effects of yoga on pain management was discussed in a Psychology Today article. According to Dr. Catherine Bushnell, one of the scientific directors of the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, yoga can reduce pain perception and increase pain tolerance chronic pain by actually restructuring the brain.
How Do I Get Started?
There are a wide variety of yoga classes that you may attend throughout New Jersey, as well as online. Talk to a staff member at the facility you choose and let them know that you’re interested in yoga as a method of controlling your chronic pain. They can help you choose the correct class. In nearly all classes, yoga movements can be modified to suit your specific needs.
If you want to know whether yoga can benefit you, feel free to call us at 201-386-8800 or contact us online today.
Our mission at Jersey Premier Pain is to provide our patients with the care they need and deserve. Everyone deserves pain management care to improve their quality of life.