Research has shown that eight out of every ten people, or eighty percent of the population will suffer from lower back pain at least once in their lifetime. If you are one of the many suffers of chronic back pain, you know how painful and frustrating this problem can be. Even an acute bout of back pain can have a negative impact on your daily lifestyle. Without a doubt pain medications, whether they come from a prescription or are sold over the counter, can ease the discomfort, but many people do not want to take medication for more than a day or two. However, there is good news for those who do not want to take prescription drugs and that is that studies have shown that there are effective options available in herbal pain relief today.
Studies Done on Devil’s Claw
In some clinical studies, Devil’s claw, also known as Harpago procumbens, has shown rather impressive results as a form of herbal pain relief. The most effective dosage amount of the devil’s claw appears to be around 50mg. At this dosage, this herb stacks up much better than a placebo, and some evidence even suggest that it is as effective as the drug Vioxx, which was taken off of the market due to concerns over its safety. Higher doses of this Devils Claw does not seem to be as effective.
White Willow Bark
For centuries, China and India have been using White Willow Bark for pain relief, the extract of this herb was actually the model for the aspirin that we are familiar with today. It is still considered to be the “herbal” aspirin by many who have enjoyed the benefits of its pain-relieving qualities. Unlike the devil’s claw that seems to be most effective in a particular dosage amount, white willow bark increases with effectiveness at higher dosages. It has also been tested against Vioxx in some clinical studies and has shown to be quite beneficial.
One of the most beneficial aspects of white willow bark is that while this herb contains some of the medicinal qualities of aspirin, users of this pain-relieving herb do not have to worry about aspirin’s possible side effects like gastric bleeding or stomach upset. It will not thin your blood the way that aspirin does either, making it a fairly safe substitute for the over-the-counter synthetic drug. It has been shown to be effective on both acute pain and chronic pain, particularly in the lower back area.
Being Responsible When Using Herbal Pain Relief
While both of these herbs show promise as pain relievers, it would be wise to consult with your doctor before taking any natural herbs for pain relief. Even “natural” medications like these can cause very dangerous side effects if they are not taken properly, or are taken along with other medications. It is best to remember that herbal pain relief medicines also work best over the short term, and when they are combined with physical activity. If you are suffering from pain of any kind, talk to your doctor about the most effective methods of herbal pain relief for you.