Chronic Pain Can Be Helped by Yoga Therapy

Recent studies published in the Journal of Pain have shown the efficiency of yoga on the treatment of chronic neck pain.

This study was conducted by the scientists at the Charité-University Medical Center, Berlin with 53 volunteer patients.

Chronic Pain


Yoga is a type of physical exercise which is known to give strength to the muscular and skeletal system of our body. More than 20% of the people in America are known to suffer from the ill effects of chronic neck pain. This condition may be caused by a number of structural dysfunctions causing not only a lot of discomfort but also impairing their work life and social life.

The normal treatment for this condition is prescription medication such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (also called NSAID). These are effective in relieving the pain but come with numerous side effects which include nausea and dizziness. Hence medical practitioners and researchers are always on the lookout for alternative therapies. Iyengar School of Yoga has been particularly studied as a solution to the chronic neck pain sufferers.

Study and Results

In this study 53 participants with chronic neck pain were studied. Out of these 25 were made to take up yoga and 28 were asked to join a regular exercise group. They were also required to fill out a questionnaire at the start of the program, after 4 weeks and then again after 10 weeks of the program.

On analysis of both the questionnaire and the physical tests of the participants, it was found that those patients who followed yoga therapy showed reduced symptoms of the condition. The intensity of the pain was much lower and clinically significant among the yoga practitioners than those in the other group. It was shown that yoga improved tone of muscles, released muscle tension and also relieved stress among the patients. Thus yoga appears to be effective not only in the treatment of neck pain but also improves psychological and physical well being of the person.