How do you relieve muscle pain without medication?
To help ease muscle pain without medication, herbs like Arnica and Devil's Claw can be helpful. Some other natural options include drinking turmeric tea, using magnesium bath salts, having a massage, consuming particular fruits like cherry juice and blueberries, plus opting for natural therapies like acupuncture.
Ease sore muscles without medication
If you want to ease sore muscles without medication you have lots of natural options. Below I've outlined just a few and explained a little bit more about the benefits they have to offer. If your symptoms are persistent or do not ease despite these measures, it is best to seek the advice of a doctor.
Arnica montana is a flower native to Europe. It is bright yellow in appearance but has more than just nice aesthetics to offer. Arnica is also known to have anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects, meaning it can be a really helpful herb to call on to help manage muscle pain naturally.
So, where can you get arnica so that you can start putting its benefits to use?
Our Atrogel Arnica Gel uses fresh Arnica flowers to make a handy topical gel. This can be applied straight to the skin to help ease muscle soreness. It is non-sticky, fast-acting and can be re-applied up to four times a day. If your muscle pain gets worse at a particular time of day, such as at night, you may want to have some Arnica gel handy.
2. Magnesium bath flakes
Magnesium bath flakes are a popular choice for helping to ease muscle pain without having to turn to medication. These are commonly made from magnesium chloride and can be dissolved in warm water to help ease tension and soreness in the muscles. This is because magnesium has a muscle-relaxing effect.
At the same time, the hot water can be calming and pain-relieving. The reason for this is that tissues relax in hot water allowing blood to rise to the surface of the skin to cool the body down and unclench/relax the muscles.
3. Devil’s Claw
Another herb that is particularly good for muscle soreness is Devil's Claw, aptly named due to the claw-shape of the fruit that this plant produces. This is a plant that is native to South Africa and it has traditionally been used for its anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving qualities.
Our Devil's Claw Tablets serve to reach every area that is painful, whether that is muscle pain in the neck or at the other end of the body, such as the thighs. The tablets can also be quite helpful for those suffering from joint pain.
Devil's Claw is suitable for long-term use and may be used alongside other medications, including pain-killing medication.
A compound within turmeric known as curcumin is thought to bring anti-inflammatory benefits. Turmeric can be added to various recipes, of course, but there is also the option of having turmeric tea. This is something that has grown in popularity of late and is now readily available in health food stores and even supermarkets.
It's important to note that the effects of curcumin are mild rather than intensive. Despite this, we don't want to be consuming lots of curcumin through a supplement. This is because doses of 500mg to 12,000 mg have been associated with negative side effects like diarrhoea, headaches, skin rashes and yellow stool. (1)
So, stick to a cuppa or fresh cooking to get the benefits of turmeric that will help with muscle pain. Interestingly, curcumin binds to fats. This means that, when we cook with oils, the curcumin sticks to it more easily and is more readily absorbed when it reaches the body. This is why cooking with turmeric is such a good option, plus it explains why some high-quality supplements are oil-based.
Massage has been shown to reduce swelling and delayed onset muscle soreness (the muscle fatigue and pain we sometimes experience after exercise). (2) This particular natural treatment is thought to work by relaxing the muscles and reducing stress or tension in the muscles. It may also increase blood flow throughout the body to help with inflammation.
Searching for a local massage therapist is the best option when suffering from muscle soreness. There are various types, such as a deep tissue massage and a sports massage, so it is important to discuss your particular pain with an expert and get the most appropriate massage to help.
Some fruits also have properties that can prove useful for sore muscles, thus providing yet another means of helping sore muscles without using painkiller medications. A few options that have been proven to provide these benefits in research include cherry and blueberry.
The antioxidants in blueberries are anti-inflammatory. Also, a 2012 study found that a blueberry smoothie could support muscle recovery after exercise. (3) Check out our blueberry smoothie here.
Cherry, on the other hand, has been seen to help with the pain and muscle damage that occurs after exercise. Also, it too is rich in antioxidants that make it anti-inflammatory. (4)
Tart, natural cherry juice is thought to be most effective when it comes to dealing with muscle soreness, so check your local health food store for the options.
Sometimes painful muscles will simply require a period of rest and recuperation to allow any damage in the muscle tissues to heal. During this time, gentle movements like yoga and walking may be helpful, alongside relaxing activities like a hot bath.
8. Natural therapies
When muscle pain is a long-term or reoccurring issue, rather than it being something that comes about from doing too many sessions in the gym, a natural therapy may be helpful.
Physiotherapy and acupuncture are just a couple of options that can bring benefits. Acupuncture because it helps to stimulate pain-relieving endorphins, and physiotherapy because it can help to ease a range of problems with exercises, therapy and advice.