Category Archives: Pain Management

The Benefits of Ayurvedic Medicine: Ashoka

Saraca Asoca flowers and leaves

Ashoka (saraca asoca/saraca indica) is the oldest known species of tree in India and is considered sacred in the Hindu faith; it’s name means “without sorrow” or “that which gives no grief” in Sanskrit. This evergreen is regarded as a universal panacea in Ayurvedic medicine, and with good reason. Ashoka is not only used as an individual Ayurvedic remedy, for a variety of ailments, but as part of synergistic blends and in pharmaceutical drug formulations as well. For the sake of brevity, I will only discuss the most documented health benefits associated with this legendary herb. …

This article has been updated and moved to the new Holistic Health & Living at


7 Tips on How to Choose an Orthopedic Pillow

swedish-pillowBy Dan Delaney

A good night’s sleep is indeed very important for everyone to have. It can dictate to a large extent the way your next day will unfold. Whether you will be productive or not, energetic or fatigued, is primarily determined by the amount and quality of sleep that you get. This is why many people are now buying orthopedic pillows to help them get the kind of sleep that allows them to greet the following day with a smile. Of course, you’ll have to make sure that the orthopedic pillow you choose is perfect for your needs. Here are seven tips on how you can choose the perfect orthopedic pillow:

1. Choose a pillow according to your favorite sleeping position

There are orthopedic pillows especially designed for back sleepers, side sleepers, and stomach sleepers. You need to determine what position you sleep in for most of the night in order to choose the right orthopedic pillow. That is because each position requires a different type and level of support.

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Acupuncture As A Remedy for Back Pain

back pain-xrayBy David A Griffiths

If you suffer from back pain you probably would not consider acupuncture as a treatment until you have exhausted many other alternatives. However, acupuncture is a type of ancient Chinese medicine that’s been around for over 2,500 years and throughout this time it has been used for back pain relief, increasingly so in these modern times.

While it is not traditionally a part of western medicine, nowadays your doctor is quite likely to send you for this treatment if you are suffering from back or neck pain either persistantly or due to accident or injury.

If you are going to have this therapy you may want to know a little about how it works. The general belief is that the body has 20 energy flow patterns called meridians or pathways. Through these pathways it is thought that the life force or vital energy flows, this is known as the qi (it is pronounced chee) and is considered to be essential to maintain good health. There are over 2,000 points on our bodies that connect with these pathways and it is at these points which the hair-thin needles are inserted, this is done in varying specific combinations depending on the treatment required. These actions are believed to either correct the flow of qi or to reinforce it.

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Eucalyptus Essential Oil for Headaches

Eucalyptus-Oil---1-fl.oz-31For years, I have used eucalyptus essential oil, alone and in combination with other oils, to treat muscle and joint aches/pains, but for headaches I was loyal to peppermint. I had always used peppermint essential oil when the tea wasn’t working quickly enough, but on one occasion, a few months back, I had run out of peppermint oil and decided to try the eucalyptus. …

This article has been updated and moved to the new Holistic Health & Living

Rotator Cuff Tendon Exercise, the Key to Healing Naturally

rotator cuff tendonBy Steve Kaiser

Rotator cuff tendon is a sturdy band of tissue that connects muscle to bone like any tendon. It is a strong, sinuous substance that is able to withstand tension. A tendon works with its muscle to exert a pulling force. Frequently what leads to a rotator cuff injury, is over use of the tendon.

The cuff has eight distinct tendons. There are four muscles and each is connected at both ends by tendons. It is where each of the tendons attach to the Humeral Head of the upper arm that they form the “cuff”. Regularly rotator cuff injury symptoms are focused upon this area.

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Selenium: Why Too Little or Too Much Can be Deadly


Selenium is a trace mineral essential to your body’s ability to function normally. Despite its importance, relatively little selenium is needed; yet, failure to consume that minuscule quantity can lead to serious, even life threatening, health problems. And the same holds true for consuming too much. To fully appreciate the importance of this mineral, we must first examine the consequences and symptoms of not getting enough selenium in our diets. … This article has been updated and moved to the new Holistic Health & Living: 

A Look At The Analgesic, Anti-Inflammatory Properties Of Essential Oils And Aromatherapy

essential-oils-manyBy Jennifer Goodwin

For much of mankind’s history, people have made use of herbal solutions to reduce pain and treat inflamed muscles, joints, and connective tissues. A tree had been the source of aspirin to alleviate pain, due in-fact to its inflammation-reducing action. Now, many expert natural health therapists and lay-practitioners are instead making use of aromatic oils for their anti-inflammatory properties, and addressing the painful symptoms of inflammation.

The oils used in aromatherapy give an easy means of reaping the anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties that holistic treatments can provide. All you have to do is mix a few a little essential oil in with a carrier or “base” oil and massage in to get nearly instant, sometimes long-lasting, pain alleviating results.

A look at the latest data uncovers a long list of abstracts where researchers have confirmed the anti-inflammatory effects of therapeutic essential oils. The oils used in therapies have been meticulously extracted to keep their medicinal potential. There’s a wide difference in aromatic oils in terms of their medicinal action, and one need to find therapeutic quality essential oils to realize this property.

The essential oils that comprise aroma therapeutic practices are really quite diverse natural chemical structures. Based on the plant from which they’re distilled, may provide a potent inflammation-reducing action which puts a halt to the formation of pro-inflammatory molecules in joints and muscles. There are a few oils where their activity might even be guessed, being extracted from herbs which have always been used for this particular purpose. Ginger and turmeric are two excellent examples.

Carbon-dioxide distillations (the latest, cold-process method of making essential oils) of both these plants are found in patented inflammation-reducing recipes. These CO2 distillations are readily available for any practitioner to utilize their profound therapeutic properties in their own formulations.

Just released are the data from a study done in Japan which confirm the anti-inflammation properties of a number of aromatherapy oils. These results affirms the inclusion of authentic essential oils in pain and inflammation relief formulas. The therapeutic essential oils proven to lessen the inflammatory response from occurring work by means of stopping production of the COX-2 pro-inflammatory enzyme. The essential oils examined in the research included oils from edible herbs like oregano and fennel, and a wide array of others such as oils from flowers, fruits, and tree leaves.

Certain oils considered by natural health practitioners to provide the most potent inflammation reducing actions employed in aromatherapy practice were not even examined. The implication is that there are naturally several of compounds present in aromatic plant oils which have inflammation reducing activity.

The greatest inflammation relief in the research was imparted by the the pure oil distilled from the aromatic herb “Thymus vulgaris“. The research continued using individual constituents of the oil, and it was learned that carvacrol demonstrated the most profound effect. This molecule is found in many other plant oils as well.

And that’s just a quick take on the subject, divulging anti-inflammation activity of essential oils. The important thing to note is that essential oils can offer a very effective, inexpensive means of treating inflammation, especially the ones which result from rheumatism and other physical pain related to aging. One of the most important aspects, too, of real essential oils is that they usually aren’t simply relieving the pain, but are often actually treating the illness, so that the symptoms might be eliminated even without their use.

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You can learn a great deal more of helpful information regarding the uses of essential oils as medicines. You’ll find an incredible amount of helpful information found at the index of over one hundred oils at The Ananda Apothecary ( And if youre interested, you can learn about individual oils such as pine needle oil (