Shocking New Revelations About Muscle Pain

The Good Life Letter
2nd July 2010

  • 7 easy ways to help relieve muscle pain
  • Revealed, how acupuncture works
  • The device you really need to treat your own pain

Search 'N' Stim:

I'm not one to go on about it, but I do get a bit of neck pain.

When asked to explain it, I put it down to my distinguished rugby
playing 'career'.

I remember the day well when I really hurt myself.  Grey, wet and

We were away to Gwent Police, and I'm convinced they forgot to
leave their truncheons in the dressing room. They were the sort of
bruisers whose noses and ears look like melted Mars bars, and had
fists like wrecking balls.

I spent so much of that game face deep in the mire, that it took a
fortnight to get the mud out of my ears and nose.

After the game we joined our tormentors for the traditional pint. In
the short-term the anaesthetic properties of Brains SA beer were
much needed. 

The next morning I was convinced that everything from my
eyebrows down was broken.

I couldn't get out of bed without pain surging through every muscle
in my neck and back.

On a Sunday the only place to go was Accident & Emergency.  The
place of lost souls.

The medics said I had an acute muscle spasm, gave me a
prescription for pain killers and a surgical collar.  No X-Ray, no
senior bone specialists, nothing to acknowledge just how serious
my condition was.

I felt cheated.

I learnt a very valuable life lesson. If you are stupid enough to hurt
yourself, don't expect anyone else to care!

7 easy ways to help relieve muscle pain

If you suffer from this type of pain, over a long period of time, you
begin to try anything to help.

So, over the years I've has a go at most things with varying
results. The ones I have mentioned before include;

* Get eating bananas! Bananas are rich in potassium, and
large amounts of potassium seem to have helped some
sufferers. Exactly why potassium helps is one of life's little
mysteries, but if it works, why ask questions! Try loading up
on potassium rich foods such as bananas, oranges and

* Try a cup of nettle tea. Nettle has been used for centuries
to treat dozens of ailments, including sciatica - because
active compounds in the leaves reduce inflammation.

* St. John's Wort Oil is said to be effective as a massage oil
for relief of muscle pain, so a gentle rub with it can help.

* Freeze it out. Rub an ice cube across any painful area until
the ice cube melts. This will help soothe the nerve.

* Ginger. Ginger is the unsung hero of pain relief, because
unknown to many people it contains some amazing
compounds that mimic the effect of aspirin, but without the
potentially harsh effect on your stomach. To ease the pain,
cut a 2 inch chunk off a fresh ginger root, slice it up and
place in 2 cups of boiling water. Let the root simmer for 30
minutes (and make sure you cover the pan so the goodness
stays in). Drink when cool.

* Chamomile tea. This one is has more of a gradual effect,
and works by soothing muscles that tighten up when pain
hits. This releases the tension and helps the pain ebb away.
Drink three cups a day.

And one of my all time favourites;

* A weird trick with a sock... fill a thick sock with one cup
of uncooked rice and place in the microwave for 60 seconds
on medium-low. Test the temperature with your fingertips
to make sure it's not too hot, then sit down with the sock
resting across your neck.

Revealed, how acupuncture works

People often tell me to try acupuncture. The science of sticking pins
into the bits that hurt.

I really don't like the idea. Show me a needle and I'll show you a
proper scaredy cat.

But, a few weeks ago you may have seen an article which was
published by a team of researchers in New York.

They were able to show that putting a needle into your skin does
have an effect on controlling pain. It's all about a substance called

This chemical is released when cells are damaged. In further
research adenosine has been linked to better sleep, calming effects
on heart rhythms and prevention of inflammation.

The important bit though, is that adenosine also acts as a natural
painkiller, becoming active in the skin after an injury as a result of
cell damage.

Basically, it inhibits nerve signals and eases pain in a way similar to
an anaesthetic.

The device you really need to treat your own pain

BUT I'm still not very happy about the whole needle thing.

So, imagine my delight to find a device that has the beneficial
effects of acupuncture, but without a pin in sight.

Search 'N' Stim:

This machine is a little hand held thing that looks a bit like an
electronic thermometer.

You rub it over your tired and aching muscles and it gives out a
high pitched squeak when it detects a bit of tight muscle. These
are the areas which commonly cause pain.

Once you have located a nasty bit, you press a little button and it
sends a short impulse into the muscle. This stimulates the
production of adenosine, and provides relief from tight muscle

Believe me when I say it's not an instrument of torture, but a
blessed relief.

Search 'N' Stim:

After 20 minutes of working the device over my neck, arms and
shoulders I really did feel relaxed and much more comfortable than
I had after a full day at the computer.

Like I said I'm not one to go on about it, but I do suffer to bring
you these pearls of wisdom each week.

Please, no sympathy.

No, really don't mention it.

Oh, go on if you really must!

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