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There are many forms of pain relief that you can try at home without assistance from a professional. However, you can’t always rely solely on these methods. Below are just a few types of pain relief treatment that require seeing a pro and when you should consider them.

Prescribed medication

This is the first form of professional pain relief that many people consider. While you can buy various types of pain relief medication over the counter, these aren’t always enough for some times of severe pain. Prescribed painkillers are much stronger and may be what you need to relieve pain if OTC painkillers don’t work. Of course, you do need to be careful about using the correct dosage and you should consider that there may be some side effects. 

You will need to see a doctor to get a prescription. If prescription medication has caused an unwanted reaction, your doctor may be able to recommend other forms of prescription medication.


Physiotherapy can be used to reduce pain in muscles and joints. It involves primarily teaching exercises and stretches to relieve pain. On top of pain relief, it typically teaches patients to regain mobility and improve posture. 

Doctors may recommend seeing a physiotherapist for certain types of pain like knee pain and back pain. Many have a medical knowledge of joints and muscles to rival doctors, however physiotherapists can vary in quality and so it’s important to read reviews before choosing one. You can research physiotherapists online.

Chiropractic therapy

A chiropractor can be hired to carry out joint adjustments and soft tissue therapy to help relieve various pains. Chiropractors are most commonly hired for back and neck pain, but can treat all kinds of joint pain and even pains like headaches that stem from joint issues. 

Although a form of alternative medicine, chiropractic care may still be recommended by a doctor in some cases. It is important to only hire a qualified chiropractor and to read reviews. Some chiropractors may also offer physiotherapy.


Acupuncture therapy involves using long slim needles to target pressure points. Patients can use it to treat all kinds of pain from back pain to period cramps. More so than chiropractic care, acupuncture is considered a form of holistic therapy as it does not have any scientific backing. However, many people swear by this ancient treatment’s effectiveness, which makes sense as to why it has endured for so long.

You should only ever seek out a qualified therapist to carry out acupuncture on you. The best therapists will know exactly which pressure points to target based on the pain you are experiencing. Some acupuncture therapists may also be qualified to carry out other forms of therapy like massage therapy. 

Massage therapy

Massage therapy involves kneading soft tissue around the body. While regular massages are sometimes used just to relax the body, specialist massages like sports massages and medical massages are used to reduce specific pains by targeting specific muscles, tendons or joints. Such massages can be used to reduce all kinds of pains from sciatica to shin splints. 

When seeking out a massage to reduce pain, look for specialist massage therapists. Those who are also physiotherapists or chiropractors are more likely to be qualified in this area than your regular spa massage therapist who may focus on relaxing muscles rather than reducing pain. 


Pain management is as mental a process as it is physical. A hypnotherapist can be hired to train the mind to overcome pain. With certain types of chronic pain like arthritis and lupus that can never be fully treated, hypnotherapy can be very useful for coping.

It’s important to hire a trained hypnotherapist. Such therapists will be able to integrate researched psychotherapy methods to help you to learn to ignore pain as well as helping you to physically reduce pain through stress management techniques. 


Some types of pain can be treated through surgery. In some cases, surgery may even be the only option for reducing pain. A doctor will prescribe such a procedure if they deem it to be an emergency. With chronic pain that is not life-threatening, you may be asked to first try other forms of treatment first before being considered for surgery. This includes surgery for conditions like sciatica, carpal tunnel syndrome and arthritic knee pain. 

If you do decide to follow the route of surgery, it could be worth looking for a specialist. Your GP will usually be able to recommend someone, but you may prefer to look for your own surgeon