Chronic pain, or pain lasting longer than three to six months, is a troublesome problem that millions of people suffer from each day. For many patients, handling chronic pain involves a revolving door of doctors and tests to identify the underlying cause of discomfort.
There are numerous chronic conditions affecting the spine, such as spondylolisthesis, fibromyalgia, and spinal stenosis. These conditions often maintain constant low levels of pain with occasional flare-ups of more intense pain and difficulty moving.
Unfortunately, not all pain has a direct cause, meaning there is also no direct cure. It can be difficult to come to terms with the fact that there is no cure for your pain – it’s merely something you have to live with. However, at Ideal Spine, we want people suffering from chronic pain to know that a diagnosis of chronic pain is not a life-sentence for discomfort.
Once the tests are done, the next best steps are acceptance and finding coping mechanisms that help you fight off the pain. Education about your specific condition is a good start on the path to managing your pain, as is a conversation with your doctor about the numerous therapeutic options available. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you navigate your chronic pain.
Pain management is not a catch-all
The important thing to remember about pain management techniques is that there will likely not be one single treatment method that immediately eliminates your pain. You’ll probably need to test out a few different methods to start, then find a combination of a few that help effectively minimize your symptoms long-term.
Fortunately, there are many options for treating pain. Anti-inflammatory medications and steroid injections may help reduce inflammation and block pain for a limited time. These may be best used at home on days your condition flares up.
Heat and cold therapy and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulators (TENS) therapy may also help minimize pain at home. Alternating between heat and cold may stimulate blood flow and keep inflammation at bay, while TENS therapy uses electrical signals to interrupt pain signals within your body.
Other forms of therapy such as massage, acupuncture, physical therapy, and chiropractic may also be good choices to switch between to help manage pain. By using a combination of methods, you should be able to find a treatment plan that helps keep symptoms at a manageable level.
Pay attention to your mental health
People suffering from chronic pain may develop depression or anxiety over time due to the extra stress chronic conditions can cause. Poor mental health can lead to even more stress, which may make your pain worse. For this reason, it’s important to take care of not only your physical health, but also your mental health.
To relieve stress, try imagery control and meditative techniques such as guided breathing or yoga. Other forms of stress management like therapy or support groups may also help lighten the burden chronic pain places on your life.
Chiropractic may be a great option for managing pain
Chiropractic care, specifically, may be helpful at managing your chronic pain. Unlike medications, chiropractic is ideal for the long-term treatment chronic disorders require.
A Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP) approach to chiropractic care involves spinal manipulation and realignment designed to promote total-body wellness. However, manipulations are not all that chiropractors can do for you.
Thanks to their expertise in spinal care and its relation to bodily wellness, your chiropractor also can help you create a pain management plan that will work best for your specific ailment and pain level. They may even teach you specific exercises to increase range-of-motion and build muscle strength. To find a chiropractor to potentially help you manage chronic pain symptoms, contact Ideal Spine.
Chiropractic BioPhysics® corrective care trained Chiropractors are located throughout the United States and in several international locations. CBP providers have helped thousands of people throughout the world realign their spine back to health, and eliminate a source of chronic back pain, chronic neck pain, chronic headaches and migraines, fibromyalgia, and a wide range of other health conditions. If you are serious about your health and the health of your loved ones, contact a CBP trained provider today to see if you qualify for care. The exam and consultation are often FREE. See www.CBPpatient.com for providers in your area.