Aching, tiring, cramping, throbbing, gnawing, tender, burning, punishing, sharp, stabbing, shooting, sickening, splitting…however you feel it, pain is a frustrating and inescapable part of life. From mild to severe, there are many different types of physical pain you can experience.
Pain management can be tricky, but thankfully there are all sorts of products to help you deal with this formidable foe. When it comes to physical pain, our motivations are clear: be able to function independently and improve your physical and mental health.
When it comes to severe pain, you may need surgery or strong medications, but there are some very serious drawbacks to each. If surgery and strong medications are not necessary, you may have other options. There are special products for mild to moderate pain, from acute pain like cramps and muscle strains to chronic pain from arthritis to sciatica.
Fortunately, there may be a product for your specific pain that is non-invasive and doesn’t need a doctor’s prescription. Below is a list of the best pain products available that you can use at home without a prescription. We’ve also answered the most common questions about pain to help you understand your condition and manage it.
Pain Relief Products
You’ve probably heard of CBD by now, but if you haven’t, here’s a quick introduction. CBD is natural, non-toxic, non-habit-forming, and you can’t overdose on it. CBD is an acronym for cannabidiol, which is a cannabinoid. There are over 100 cannabinoids in the cannabis plant, and there are two species of this plant: hemp and marijuana.
CBD oil must be derived from commercial hemp containing less than 0.3% THC to be legal in America. THC is a cannabinoid that’s infamous for getting you high. CBD, on the other hand, does not get you high. Instead, CBD has been purported to have many medicinal properties, including pain relief and anti-inflammation. Balance CBD’s 2500 mg CBD oil is natural, vegan friendly, and highly reviewed.
2. BioWaveGo Chronic and Acute Pain Relief
This advanced electrical stimulation device promotes pain relief. With just half an hour of use, you can get a full day’s relief. Once turned off and removed, the healing properties continue to work, a major boon for those who suffer from chronic pain.
The BioWaveGo Chronic and Acute Pain Relief works by creating alternating and high-frequency currents that trigger a low-frequency electrical field generated by the body. This new field blocks pain, reduces stiffness, and helps with range of motion.
3. Thermophore Heat Pack
The Thermophore Heat Pack delivers moist heat to your body. The heat penetrates deep into the muscles, which helps with stiffness, cramps, and pain. The relief that this device brings can last for hours as the heat promotes circulation to help damaged tissue by delivering oxygen and removing toxins.
The benefits of the Thermophore Heat Pack include pain relief, reduced stiffness, better circulation, promotes blood flow, toxin removal, and tissue repair. Moisture improves heat penetration without the need to use water, which can be messy. Moist heat does not damage tissue and helps bring moisture back to the body.
4. Acupressure Mat and Pillow
Acupressure comes from Traditional Chinese Medicine. It’s believed that the body has a flow of energy known as chi. Acupressure purportedly relieves pain by removing blockages in chi.
Acupressure mats and pillows have hundreds of points. When you lay down, these points align with key points in your back. An acupressure pillow aligns with key points in your neck and head.
People use acupressure mats and pillows to alleviate pain in the neck, pain in the back, pain due to fibromyalgia, pain due to sciatica, and headaches.
5. Heatlux Pro 2 FDA Approved Pain Relief Device
This FDA-approved device relieves pain by working past the layers of deep tissue. It works using Bipolar Radiofrequency. Use it on muscles and joints to promote circulation. Low Light Laser Therapy helps with muscle spasms, and Infrared and Red Spectrum Heat Energy help with stiffness and pain.
You can take this device on-the-go to help with injuries, menstrual cramps, and pain. It’s easy-to-use and helps promote your body’s natural healing.
6. Orthopedic Knee Pillow
We all sleep differently. Depending on how you sleep and what type of pain you’re dealing with, Knee Pillows can provide simple yet effective pain relief. Knee Pillows take away stress on your spine by supporting its natural curvature.
Side and back sleepers can use Knee Pillows to position the body correctly. The upper leg is propped up, so it doesn’t aggravate the spine or stress the hips. Knee Pillows give the body stability, promote circulation, keep legs in place, and alleviate pain in the joints, knees, and nerves.
7. Electric Blanket
Electric blankets help with pain management because of its heating properties. Heat has been scientifically proven to help with aches and pains. The heat emitted from the electric blanket reduces muscle tightness and enables you to relax.
The heat from the electric blanket also promotes blood flow, which can help in recovery and rehabilitation. The benefits of an electric blanket include pain relief, better sleep, improved mood, and general warmth. Electric blankets can be made of fleece, polyester, or cotton. Check the temperature range, and if there is a timer to ensure optimum comfort.
8. Sombra Warm Therapy Natural Pain Relieving Gel
This warming gel may help with pain associated with fibromyalgia, arthritis, bursitis, and other aches and pains. This gel is fast-acting as it penetrates deep under the skin and isn’t messy. Sombra Warm Therapy Natural Pain Relieving Gel is scent-free, alcohol-free, and free of artificial colors.
There’s no sticky residue, so it doesn’t leave a stain. This gel works by utilizing heat (warm) therapy. As we mentioned earlier, this therapy is excellent for chronic pain and pain lasting more than 48 hours.
9. Cooling Gel (Biofreeze)
There are many different cooling gels available, but Biofreeze has been around for 25 years. Apply this non-addictive gel to sore areas topically. People have been using this for pain relief on joints and muscles. Clinical research has proven the efficacy of cooling gels.
Biofreeze cooling gels can help treat bruises, neck pain, strains, back pain, sprains, and arthritis. Biofreeze is recommended by personal trainers, chiropractors, and physical therapists. You can get Biofreeze in three different application types: roll-ons, sprays, and gels.
10. MyTens Pro Wireless Bluetooth Electrotherapy Tens Unit
TENS stands for transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. There are many units available, but this unit uses Bluetooth to make it easy to control from your smartphone and removes the needs for wires that can be a nuisance when using other devices.
There are 70 electrode configurations, 19 therapies, and four treatments that include fitness, muscle stimulation, relaxation, and pain relief. People use the MyTens Pro Wireless Bluetooth Electrotherapy Tens Unit for recovery, stress relief, pain management, and general health.
11. Chair Massage Cushion
While some people swear by massage chairs, the majority of people cannot afford this luxury. A convenient, portable alternative is a chair massage cushion. If you’re sitting in front of a desk all day, you could develop Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT). This leg clot could be painful. These chair massage cushions improve circulation to prevent DVT.
All you need to do is place the cushion over a regular chair. Align the back and the lower portion with your back and top of the back of your legs. Depending on your cushion, you can have several massage settings. Moving nodes and rollers mimic different massage styles such as Swedish, Thai, and shiatsu.
12. Memory Foam Support Pillows
Memory foam pillows can hold their shape so that they can give you personalized support to your neck and head. These pillows evenly distribute weight, alleviate pressure, and relieve neck and back pain. All these properties promote restful sleep.
A good night’s sleep is vital to our physical and mental health. Memory foam pillows don’t make a lot of noise and are very energy absorbent, so if your partner moves a lot during sleep, you won’t be disturbed. Plus, memory foam pillows are dust mite resistant, which is excellent if you suffer from asthma or allergies.
13. Saunders Cervical HomeTrac Traction Device
Traction has been used for years for rehabilitation, physical therapy, and chiropractic work. This device is especially useful because it is compact at only 10 pounds, with no assembly needed. While small, the Saunders Cervical HomeTrac Traction Device provides 50 pounds of decompression.
This device applies gentle force to realign the vertebrae, decompress the spine, and promote oxygen within the spinal discs to heal damaged tissues. In particular, people with whiplash and other neck issues could find this device useful.
14. Breathable Compression Brace
Whether you’re active or need support, compression braces are great for athletes or general pain management. They are useful preventative measures, especially if you’re active. They can help avoid joint and limb damage. If you wear a compression brace, you can still function even though you’re injured.
You can wear compression braces on your limbs, on your knees and elbows, and your back. Compression braces improve blood flow to the muscles and promote a faster recovery after activity.
15. G-Force Compression Cryotherapy Back Brace
Use the wireless G-Force Compression Cryotherapy Back Brace when you’re out and about or at home resting. This device reduces pain and inflammation through compression and cold. Cold and compression are scientifically proven to help with pain and recovery.
This back brace is adjustable and comfortable. You can customize the compression to ensure that you do not hurt yourself further. Many athletes use cryotherapy for their recovery. This brace reduces swelling, helps with pain, supports the spine, and keeps the back safe.
16. Compression Gloves
Compression gloves are used by those that have arthritis and general hand pain. These gloves are specially designed for support, warmth, and compression. Like other compression products, compression gloves promote circulation, which decreases lactic acid and other pain contributors.
Thanks to the warmth and compression, the gloves have anti-inflammatory properties and help recovery. People who have rheumatoid arthritis should wear these gloves during sleep. If you need them every day, choose partial gloves with open fingertips for easier movement.
17. Microwavable Rice Heat Pack
Microwavable rice heat packs are uncomplicated and effective forms of pain relief. These are a form of hot/cold pads. Cold is used when the injury has happened within the last two days. Heat is used if the pain is chronic or has gone on longer than two days.
Keep in mind that you can damage the rice pack if it gets wet or if you overheat it and burn the rice. The rice pack is easy to heat. Depending on how warm you want it and how large the pack is, heat it anywhere from 30 to 120 seconds in the microwave.
18. Hyland’s Leg Cramps Pills
Hyland’s has been around since 1903. This homeopathic medicine is formulated explicitly for leg cramps. Whether you’re a runner or are just prone to these painful cramps, these pills are easy to use and fast-acting. Dissolve 2-3 tablets under your tongue. You don’t need water to swallow them. There is no aspirin, Acetaminophen, Ibuprofen, or naproxen used.
From 2013 to 2019, Hyland’s Leg Cramps pills have won numerous awards and is also the Boston Marathon’s official sponsor.
19. Acupressure Insoles
If you work long hours on your feet or suffer foot pain, Acupressure insoles can provide you with much-needed relief. You simply have to walk, and the special acupressure nodes work their magic, providing a firm foot massage.
If you’ve ever had a foot massage, you know the pleasures and pain relief it can bring. The nodes on the soles match specific acupressure points on your foot that relieve pain, heel spurs, and plantar fasciitis. Plus, these insoles also allow your feet to breathe thanks to built-in ventilation holes.
20. Tiger Balm
There’s a good chance that you’ve heard of Tiger Balm. It’s been around since the 1900s and was created in the 1870s in Burma by a Chinese herbalist using primarily menthol and camphor. People use Tiger balm for muscle relief, joint pain, toothaches, toenail fungus, stretch marks, back pain, stomachaches, congestion, shoulder pain, neck pain, headaches, arthritis pain, minor burns, osteoarthritis pain, mosquito bites, and neuropathy.
This natural pain reliever uses camphor for warming and cooling, menthol as an anesthetics, Cinnamomum cassia oil as an anti-inflammatory, eucalyptus for coughs and colds, and capsicum as an anti-inflammatory and pain reliever.
21. Outback Pain Relief All-Natural Pain Relief Topical Oil (Roll-On)
If you find creams and gels to be a hassle and are afraid of the stains they leave, use Outback Pain Relief All-Natural Pain Relief Topical Oil for its roll-on application. This easy-to-use roll-on keeps things hands-free so that you don’t accidentally rub your eyes with cream covered hands.
As the name suggests, only all-natural ingredients are used for this formulation. Only four ingredients are used: olive oil, tea tree oil, vanilla, and eucalyptus. Together, these ingredients help with pain and inflammation.
22. Acetaminophen (Tylenol)
The best known Acetaminophen brand is Tylenol. Acetaminophen is a pill or tablet used for mild to moderate pain, including muscle soreness, headaches, cold/flu, menstrual pain, osteoarthritis, toothaches, and even fever. Acetaminophen interacts with your brain, affecting how you process pain.
The problem with Acetaminophen is that there can be issues associated with taking it. Some people may experience an allergic reaction. Symptoms may include respiratory issues, rash, dizziness, itching, or swelling of the face, tongue, or throat. You should speak to your doctor before taking Acetaminophen if you have liver disease, are pregnant, or taking other medications.
23. Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)
NSAIDs include Ibuprofen. The brands you may be familiar with are Motrin and Advil. NSAIDs also include naproxen, and the bands you may be familiar with are Aleve and Naprosyn. Diclofenac gel also falls under NSAIDs, and these topical pain relievers include Icy Hot and BenGay.
NSAIDs come in pill and tablet forms and are used for mild to moderate pain and are also used for inflammation. NSAIDs work by reducing the substance that causes pain. The problem with NSAIDs is that the risk of stroke, heart attack, kidney problems, and stomach ulcers and bleeding increases.
These NSAIDs patches are used for mild pain, including muscle strains, aches, sprains, bruising, and arthritis. These patches are easy to use for localized relief.
Some people experience side effects, including hives, respiratory issues, and swelling of your throat, face, lips, or tongue. Seek immediate attention if you experience severe swelling, pain, or blistering of your skin.
As mentioned earlier, there are many purported therapeutic benefits of CBD. People report having success using CBD for inflammation and muscle soreness. Balance CBD’s CBD Cream for Muscle Relief uses Nanotechnology to ensure that the CBD formulation penetrates deep past the thick layers of skin down to your aching muscles.
This unique blend includes the essential oils Rosemary, Lavender, and cooling menthol. Balance CBD’s Muscle Relief cream was even chosen for the Golden Globe Awards 2020 gift bag.
The Most Frequently Asked Questions About Pain
1. Why should I consider CBD?
Many people turn to CBD because it is natural, non-addictive, non-toxic, and you can’t overdose on it. The World Health Organization has called it safe for human consumption. There are no severe side effects, which can’t be said for other over-the-counter pain relievers. Here is a list of the best CBD oils, best CBD gummies, best CBD brands in general. CBD is also great for sexual health, you can find the best CBD lube products on this list.
Did you know CBD can also be used for your pets for the same problems humans have. Here is a list of the best CBD oil for dogs.
2. How can exercise help with pain?
Even low to moderate physical activity can keep you healthy. Not only does it help your mood, but it can also improve sleep, energy, and chronic pain. Try cardio exercises, strength exercises, or stretching, including yoga.
3. What’s the easiest thing I can do to relieve pain?
Deep breathing can help you refocus from your pain to the act of breathing. It also improves the flow of oxygen throughout your body. Deep breathing gives a sense of calm and relaxation, which helps you deal with pain.
4. How does diet affect pain?
A healthy diet can help with inflammation and issues related to being overweight, including back and knee strain. Some foods to avoid include soda, sugary foods, fried foods, and processed foods.
5. Does acupuncture work?
The answer is mixed, as some people find success with acupuncture while others do not. Several studies have found that acupuncture can help with musculoskeletal pain, osteoarthritis pain, and headaches.
6. How does stress affect pain?
Stress can be a massive contributor to pain because prolonged stress can lead to different physical stress responses and chronic pain. Manage your stress with exercise, meditation, or deep breathing exercises.
7. What can I expect from physical therapy?
There are various techniques used by physical therapists to help you with injuries, mobility, and, of course, pain. They may use massage, ultrasound, joint mobilization, trigger point release, and putting you through a specific exercise regimen.
8. Can improving my posture help with pain?
Whether slouching in front of the computer or looking down at your device, poor posture can be painful to your back, neck, and joints. Try taking a break from devices or slouching by standing and stretching.
9. Can pain have a psychological cause?
Yes, pain can be psychological but manifest in physical ways. It can be brought on by stress, trauma, depression, or anxiety. Try speaking to a professional if you are experiencing chronic pain.
10. What can I do if pain is affecting my sleep?
Talk to your doctor to find the root cause of your pain so you can address it accordingly. Improving your sleep hygiene can help improve your sleep in general. Stick to a regular sleep routine and sleep and wake up at the same time each day.
11. What should I look for in an over-the-counter pain reliever?
Check for the dosage, the form, and, most importantly, the ingredients. The dosages will be on the labels and will differ by brand. The form can be pill, capsule, or topical cream. Be mindful of the ingredients if you are allergic or take other medications that can interact with the pain reliever.
12. Can I take herbal remedies for pain relief?
Yes, you can take herbal remedies for pain; however, talk to your doctor if you take other medications because there can be some interactions. Some herbal remedies that are effective against pain are turmeric, white willow bark, ginger, devil’s claw, and cat’s claw.
13. What is TENS?
TENS stands for transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation therapy. TENS devices use electrical stimulation to help relieve pain. Electrodes are placed on the skin, and low-voltage stimulates the nerves in that area, so your brain does not pick up the pain signals.
14. What is Bioelectric Therapy?
Bioelectric therapy blocks pain signals to your brain. It also promotes endorphins that also block pain signals to your brain. It can be used for many chronic and acute pain issues that include scleroderma, back pain, diabetic neuropathy, muscle pain, TMJ, arthritis, headaches, and migraines.
15. When should I take painkillers?
Prescription painkillers can be addictive and have dangerous side effects. Speak to your doctor before taking painkillers. Take them as prescribed.