Your dishwasher springs a leak. There’s water EVERYWHERE.
You’re ankle deep, battling the deluge when someone walks up to you and says, “Hey, want to trade that flood in for a house fire?”
I think I can guess what your answer would be.
Well, researchers were seriously considering asking folks suffering from carpal tunnel, tendonitis, and other repetitive motion injuries a similarly ridiculous question.
Do you want to trade in your pain for the inability to properly feel heat?
Lucky for us, this experiment never made it past the lab rat stage.
Pain helps protect you from harm
You may have heard of Substance P.
As I’ve explained before, it’s a neurotransmitter your body uses to shuttle pain signals to your brain.
No one LIKES to feel pain of course. But it exists for a reason. Pain warns us when something is wrong, so we don’t risk hurting ourselves even more.
Substance P is what allows you to know your elbow hurts after playing tennis all day, for example. And it’s because of this chemical you realize the handle of a pot is too hot to hold BEFORE you burn yourself badly.
And it’s this very same neurotransmitter that an experimental drug designed to treat repetitive motion pain was made to target.
Turns out REST is BEST for carpal tunnel
Now rats don’t play tennis or type on a computer all day like us.
So the researchers had to figure out how to give them the same sort of repetitive motion injuries humans sometimes suffer from.
They taught the critters to repeatedly pull a lever, and it worked. After 12 weeks “on the job” the rats…
- had weaker grip strength
- showed signs of discomfort
Plus, they had increased levels of collagen in their lever-pulling arms, a clear sign of tissue damage.
In other words, they had carpal tunnel.
The rats were all allowed to rest for four weeks. But during that downtime, one group was given an experimental drug that blocks Substance P.
After the month off, the researchers compared the group that got rest alone with the one which was given the drug. And their recovery was essentially the same.
Pain levels had dropped in both groups. And collagen production had returned to normal. The only difference was that the rats that got the drug had slightly better grip strength.
But they paid a dangerous price for that small bump in power. The rats on the Substance-P-blocking drug weren’t able to feel very hot temperatures properly.
Which, of course, in the REAL world means you’d be in danger of suffering severe burns. OUCH!
In this case, even the researchers testing the drug knew it was a dud. And they declared REST the better treatment for carpal tunnel.
Find pain relief without the worry
Most mainstream doctors only offer two options for carpal tunnel and similar problems. Either dangerous drugs or an invasive surgery.
But there is a third PROVEN option… start with REST instead.
If you find you still need some extra support natural pain relievers can help.
Products containing menthol or camphor have been used for centuries to soothe painful injuries.
And some of the most effective formulas include a mix of pain-targeting ingredients such as MSM, emu oil, DMSO, lemon oil, and capsaicin.
Capsaicin, which is made from chili peppers, even targets the same Substance P pathway I told you about earlier.
But instead of the sledgehammer approach the failed drug took, capsaicin is a milder solution without the same side effects. Which means you get the pain relief you deserve without trading in your safety.
She is an advocate of self-education and is passionate about the power of group knowledge sharing, like the kind found right here on HealthierTalk.com. Alice loves to share her views on holistic and natural healing as well as her, sometimes contentious, thoughts on the profit-driven inner workings of traditional medicine.
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