Posted by Kate

Last night I was looking through an old box of curled, yellowed photographs, in search of a Kodak moment which could be used to "roast" my husband at an upcoming event. I was looking for the shot that showed him as a college freshman sporting a cheesy 70's mustache and a perm, wearing platform shoes and a shiny polyester shirt, with the gigantic pukka shell necklace peaking through his plunging neckline. True story. But even though I found the photograph I was looking for, the joke was on me because there were photos in that box of me in my 70's and 80's "get ups" which were even worse!

There were dozens of hysterically horrible pictures of me to chose from, but the one that took the cake was the 1976 shot in which I posed saucily wearing a denim jumpsuit that was seriously too short, with shoulder pads the size of Delaware, with hair apparently styled by Frankenstein himself, while sporting a wide red polka dot plastic belt, and eye liner that made me look like a weary Egyptian Cleopatra. And I distinctly remember being glad to have my picture taken that day to capture my "groovy" look,  because I KNEW I LOOKED SO CUTE! (Note: if you are too young to remember this era and are smirking at my fashion choices, just wait 20 years and see how that photo of you sporting the baseball hat worn backwards or the intentionally visible underwear strikes you).

My little stroll down fashion memory lane was equal parts painful and funny.

What isn't funny about getting older is that years of use and abuse cause aging joints to hurt. A lot. Real pain which makes even getting a good nights rest elusive without daily doses of over-the-counter aspirins and their chemical cousins.  Everything from old sports injuries to age related joint inflammation sneak in painful reminders that you are no longer 18 and bullet proof. The #1 complaint heard by physicians in patients over 30 is simple body pain.

As always, talk to your doctor, but if you are looking into homeopathic options as a way to avoid an endless program of ingestible chemical pain relievers, you might want to consider BioFreeze pain relieving gel. It contains something called Ilex Paraguariensisich, which is an herbal extract from a South American holly shrub. Ilex has been used for centuries as a natural topical pain reliever. It can be used on sore muscles and sprains, chronic back, shoulder, and neck pain, arthritis, joints (knee, hip, elbow, etc). This is fairly powerful stuff, and is typically sold directly through and to Practitioners ( Chiropractors, Massage Studios) and through the BioFreeze website.

I was recently introduced to BioFreeze by my masseuse who used it on me prior to some really "deep" trigger point work on an old sports injury in my shoulder.  The BioFreeze didn't "scald" my sensitive skin like the "hot pepper" (capzasin)  products, the smell was tolerable, and the pain relief was immediate and lasted all afternoon and through the night. She sent some Biofreeze home with me, and my husband has tried Biofreeze on his aching knees with a good result. I used the creme, but BioFreeze also comes in a roll-on, and a spray.  As always, don't be stupid and apply it to open wounds, your eyes, or pour it on without doing a "test" spot first, and wash your hands thoroughly after application. That being said, I haven't heard of any negative reactions when used as directed.

The primary ingredinents are what you would expect to find in a topical rub, with the exception of the addition of the Ilex Paraguariensis. According to the manufacturers website, the ingredients In Biofreeze are as follows: Active Ingredients: menthol, 3.5%; camphor, 0.2%. Inactive Ingredients: water, isopropyl alcohol, herbal extract (ILEX Paraguariensis), carbomer, triethanolamine, silicon dioxide, methylparaben, FD&C yellow #5, FD&C blue #1

If only Biofreeze would relieve the pain of those old faddish photographs.