The Official National Department of Health COVID-19 Support Service: 060 012 3456 (WhatsApp)

Find a Doctor

or Dentist

Hospitals

Where can you go?

Careers

View positions

Pre-Authorisation / 24hr Emergency

0861 11 00 33

Home remedies for pain relief

Home remedies for pain relief

Home Remedies for Pain – Pain can range from mild to debilitating. Most times, pain will signal a more serious underlying issue that definitely needs medical attention. But getting to a doctor isn’t always possible immediately. Whether the pain is a dull ache, or at a stabbing intensity, there are things you can do to ease the discomfort till you can see a doctor. 

Yes, there are loads of over-the-counter medications available, but most have undesirable side effects. Access to pharmacy medication could also be limited if you experience pain in the middle of the night.

Here are a few home remedies for pain you can try. Be wary, nothing substitutes professional medical care. Consult with your GP before attempting any home remedies. 

Home Remedies for Pain: Cloves

The most well-known remedy for toothache, cloves and clove oil, can be used for so much more! Used as a topical treatment, clove oil can be applied to relieve pain in many parts of the body. Cloves contain an active ingredient –eugenol – that numbs the skin it touches. Eugenol is a natural anaesthetic and also a natural anti-inflammatory.

According to Medical News Today, researchers applied clove, benzocaine gel, or a placebo to the inside of the participants’ mouths. They reported lower levels of pain with both clove and benzocaine gels, but not with placebos. Researchers also believe that cloves can have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antifungal and antiviral properties.

Home Remedies for Pain: Turmeric

Another popular toothache and gum pain remedy, Turmeric, is popular for fighting infections in the mouth and gives comfort with its anti-inflammatory, pain-numbing properties.

Turmeric is widely used in Indian and Eastern culture for its flavour and antibacterial properties. The root plant is also hailed for other oral health benefits like breath freshening and teeth whitening. 

In 2012, researchers found that curcumin in turmeric can prevent gum disease.

Turmeric is already being used in the dental world as a mouthwash and a pit and fissure sealant (cavity prevention method), as well as a subgingival irrigant (for gum diseases), explains Ask The Dentist.

It reduces pro-inflammatory histamine levels and promotes the production of natural inflammation-suppressing cortisone in the body. Some people also use it to make a paste to treat open wounds. It also has disinfecting properties. 

Home Remedies for Pain: Chillies

It seems counterproductive, but consuming and topically applying capsaicin can help with pain relief. Capsaicin is found in chillies and peppers. It is the natural active component of chilli peppers that gives it the spiciness. It serves as an irritant in nature to deter wildlife.

Loads of pain-relief products contain capsaicin, especially ones applied topically for muscle pain. Researchers say that it works by decreasing the skin’s sensitivity to pain. It numbs the nociceptor fibres, which are nerves that carry pain signals to the brain.

As explained by Wikipedia, capsaicin in fact causes pleasurable, euphoric effects if ingested, which is why spicy foods are so sought after. 

“Folklore among self-described ‘chilli heads’ attributes this to the pain-stimulated release of endorphins, a different mechanism to the local receptor overload that makes capsaicin effective as a topical analgesic.”

Home Remedies for Pain: Exercise

For arthritis and other joint pain, moving around may be exactly what you need to feel better!

This could be because regular, controlled exercise strengthens muscles that support joints improving muscle tone, strength and flexibility. It produces endorphins, the body’s natural pain relief hormone. 

And the exercise doesn’t need to be intense! Be wary of your particular level of fitness and don’t push yourself too hard. Easing into gentle stretches and perhaps doing beginner yoga and aerobics may be all you need to do to make a difference. Be strict, though! Make a point of exercising your muscles every day. 

Home Remedies for Pain: Temperature

Heat or cold compresses are also well-known ways of stopping pain. According to The Physiotherapy Clinics, soft tissue damage can also occur from excessive overuse or chronically fatigued structures, especially muscles and tendons.

For example, if you were to continue a strenuous exercise after already being fatigued, you could cause trauma or a strain to key running musculoskeletal structures. These structures include your calf muscles or Achilles’ tendons. These injuries, depending on their nature, can be treated with either heat or cold – great home remedies for pain.

Commonly, sportsmen – particularly runners – suffer from soft tissue damage to the ankles and knees owing to excessive amounts of pressure on the joints. This is because these joints receive all of the pressure and friction as their feet hit the ground, explains iER. 

Cold Compresses for Pain

Most of the time, the sprained muscle or ligament needs to rest to regenerate while being iced.

Any swelling can be treated with ice packs and cold compresses. Never put heat on swelling, it will cause tissue damage. As for cold, never put ice directly on the sore area. Also, limit the amount of time that you put ice on the wound to 20 minutes per session. Prolonged exposure to ice can cause hypothermia in the wounded area.

Hot Compresses for Pain

Heat should be used in the absence of swelling, for chronic pain. This means that the pain is not from a fresh injury.

To heat up affected areas, you can use a hot water bottle, a gel-filled pad that can be heated in the microwave, an electric heating pad or a hot bath.

Besides sore muscles, heat can also be used as a home remedy to ease menstrual and stomach pain. 

For pain that needs medical care, find a medical insurance that will cover your consultations and chronic medication. 

If you’re new to Affinity Health Insurance, or looking for the perfect package to fit your family, there are loads of options available to choose from. From cover for the kids in the

Affinity Junior option, to sufficient health insurance for your elderly parents with Affinity senior; everyone in your family has an equal opportunity for cover.

Affinity has day-to-day cover, a hospital plan and even a combined plan to meet your family’s needs. But even more impressive is the ability to mix and match and find a plan for each family member, from grandparents to new-borns.