In an article at the company’s web site (Natural Pain Relief at Hand for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Real Solution Remedies discuss using their “Naturally Painless” spray-on pain relief for dealing with RSI pain. The product is touted as an all-natural alternative to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin and ibuprofen, providing pain relief without the side effects of the drugs.
I haven’t tried the product, so have no knowledge of whether it works or not. It certainly sounds interesting, and the web site features glowing testimonials from satisfied customers.
But what caught my attention was this sentence: “Carpal tunnel syndrome and other strain injuries can keep you from doing your best work. Now help is at hand – with just a few sprays you can experience natural pain relief and get back to full speed.”
That sounds dangerous to me. I have nothing against pain relief – if you’re in pain, do whatever it takes to get relief. But it’s the last few words that are the problem: “get back to full speed”.
Let’s be clear about this. Pain is a symptom of a deeper problem – Repetitive Strain Injury, in this case. Pain relievers, whether drugs or this Naturally Painless spray, are treating the symptoms, not the underlying problem. They’re a band-aid. They cover up the symptoms and help you get through the day, but in no way are they dealing with the underlying problem.
If, after taking something for pain relief, you “get back to full speed”, then you’re very likely to injure yourself further. Pain is a warning signal from your body. If you mask that pain, then continue to do more of whatever it was that caused the pain, you’re only going to hurt yourself more.
The only real way to deal with RSI pain is to address the the problems, not the symptoms. Improve your ergonomics. Strengthen your muscles. Increase your flexibility. Improve your posture. If you must seek short-term pain relief, then do so, but do so with full understanding of your actions and their potential consequences. Whatever you do, don’t “get back to full speed” with the very actions that caused the pain in the first place.