Healthy people don’t understand the burden that chronic pain is for those who endure it and others within their homes, workplaces, and social circles. For chronic pain sufferers, life is a daily grind of trying to cope with overwhelming pain. Acute pain relief options, such as over-the-counter pills, creams and gels, and bed rest, never provide any lasting relief. Fatigue and irritation caused by chronic pain along with the pain itself make it impossible for them to keep promises, stick to schedules or maintain healthy relationships. You don’t have to carry this burden alone. Consider the following solutions to help ease your suffering.
1. Talk About Your Pain
Many people suffer in silence. They don’t want to burden others with complaints about their pain. Yet, their silent suffering can cause miscommunications that create unnecessary strain in relationships. The combination of continuous pain and isolation also increases the likelihood of anxiety and depression and feelings of loneliness. If you’re experiencing problems with your close or work relationships, talk to your loved ones and colleagues about how your pain is limiting you and making you feel. If you’re concerned about losing your job, talk to human resources with legal counsel. Also, seek out other sufferers in offline and online support groups. Talking to people who understand your pain can boost your mood and help you feel less alone. These interactions may even help you improve your pain tolerance levels since negative emotions and thoughts can make pain feel more painful.
2. Do Your Pain Research
To combat chronic pain, you must have a good understanding of it. If you haven’t researched possible causes and treatments, it’s time to learn more. For starters, chronic pain can occur anywhere in the body, but common locations include the joints, knees, feet, hands, shoulders, neck, spine, and muscles. Especially as people age and their bodies break down from normal wear and tear and after they experience injuries from accidents and repetitive habits. Some people experience chronic pain because of nerve, muscle, or bone defects. Other common sources of chronic pain include arthritic swelling and tenderness, nerve compression and deterioration, carpal tunnel syndrome, joint deterioration and osteophytes, herniated discs, complex regional pain syndrome, fibromyalgia, inflammatory diseases, diabetes, migraines, connective tissue and myofascial pain syndromes, benign tumors, and cancer.
3. Visit a Pain Clinic
A pain clinic specialist is an important resource for information. They can help you to better understand the source of your pain and create a treatment plan that provides you with long-term relief. They can also assist you as time passes to modify any treatment to match changes in your body and the type and duration of pain as you age. They usually review your medical history and past test results and order new diagnostic tests and refer you to other specialists. After they have a better grasp of your situation, they make coping and treatment recommendations that usually include some combination of over-the-counter and prescription medications, injections, acupuncture, nerve blocks, pain pumps, external or internal stimulators, massage therapy, physical therapy, home exercise, mental healthcare, and surgery.
4. Change Your Current Diet
Some foods increase the level of pain you feel. A diet that includes a lot of sugar causes pain by increasing your body’s inflammation levels. Salty foods increase fluid retention, which can make your body feel heavier. Any weight gain from eating a lot of sugar, carbohydrates, and certain fats can place too much pressure on painful joints. Speak with your doctor or pain specialist about the best diet for your pain based on your biological sex, height, weight, and other factors. Keep in mind that there are also foods that decrease pain by reducing inflammation and infections that cause inflammation, including garlic, tart cherries, salmon, and plants that contain capsaicin. Also, speak with your doctors about allergy testing. Many chronic pain sufferers have undiagnosed allergies causing hidden inflammation.
Although it may seem untrue at the moment, chronic pain won’t control your body or you for the rest of your life. You can prevent it from weighing you down, ruining the things in life that bring you the most joy, and damaging your relationships. All you need to do is put in the time and effort necessary to improve pain management. By following these four simple steps, you can live a more fulfilling and less painful life.
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