Many early memories of pain relief are associated with grandmother’s store cupboards and knowing its power and potency. There were herbs and spices such as cloves to take away toothache, garlic to cure ear pain, turmeric to ease cuts, lavender to make migraines vanish, peppermint to make bones hurt less and eucalyptus to ease the aches of the flu.
Every culture has potions and poultices that have traveled over time to help people combat pain. The efficacy of some has been proven by medical research, while others now come efficiently packaged for purchase.
“Most of our patients come here disappointed, or to avoid the side effects. We offer a variety of treatments that are individualized, effective, and don’t have side effects.” DHTC offers Ayurveda, homeopathy, Certificated Lymphedema Therapist (CLT) and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), among others. Dr. Alonso says the newest is laser IV treatment for chronic pain and inflammation, but acupuncture remains the most popular and effective.
Dr. Jun Huang (MD, Acupuncture, and Tuina), Chaslu Wellbeing Centre says, “Acupuncture is one of many solutions in TCM for pain-alleviation, and all focus on the life energy chi, its 12 meridians or channels, and its 365 treatment points. A rough translation of an old Chinese saying is – channel blocked only pain, the channel opened, no pain.”
Clinical hypnotherapist Soniyaa Kiran Punjabi is the founder of Illuminations Well-Being Centre at Jumeirah Lakes Towers. She argues that most doctors only treat symptoms while ignoring the emotional and mental well-being of people in pain. “We help them release their emotional blocks, start loving themselves and then use powerful approaches that attempt to resolve their physical pain. Our approach involves identifying psychological or mental triggers that create emotional issues, which get stored in our tissues. We then use a combination of non-invasive methods to resolve them.”
Punjabi says every form of healing has its place alongside allopathy, and the center offers a combination of hypnotherapy, energy healing, sound healing, breathwork, and bio-energy bodywork. “All the modalities we offer simply complement mainstream medication and are not replacements.”
In less exotic, everyday options – with classes and sessions across the country – Indian yoga and Chinese tai chi are exercise practices to stretch and strengthen muscles. Many studies have proven that both can help people manage pain caused by different conditions.
There is more. Long-term Dubai resident Anupama Venugopal is doing her MA in Art Therapy from Indian Holistic Mental Health Research Centre and aims to practice it. Studies show its remarkable success with palliative patients in pain. “Art therapy does not replace painkillers. It gives a person a venue and an avenue to forget about the pain,” she says. “What will be achieved is a tranquil state of mind where the pain is neither ceaseless nor constant.”