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Chronic pain can be a debilitating condition that significantly impacts daily life. It can be caused by a number of things, like an injury, illness, or nerve damage. While there are many different ways to deal with chronic pain, it can be extremely challenging to manage day-to-day when it feels like the pain is constantly in control. This post will explore some of the best ways to manage chronic pain and maintain a relatively normal lifestyle.
What is Chronic Pain?
Chronic Pain is defined as pain that lasts for more than three months. The pain can be constant and be present all the time or the pain can come and go.
Common Types of Chronic Pain
- Back pain
- Nerve pain
How to minimize the impact of pain in your life?
Develop coping skills
The first thing a person needs to learn, in order to cope, is acceptance. Accepting the reality of the situation makes it easier for the person to live a healthy and productive life despite the pain.
Coping skills vary from person to person but can include talking to significant others, writing a journal, taking a quiet and peaceful walk, and regularly visiting the medical provider.
Limiting the movement of the affected part can oftentimes worsen the pain. This is because calcium deposits develop in body parts that are not constantly moving. Keeping yourself active and moving the affected body part can stretch the muscles and bones within the area and result in reduced pressure on the surrounding tissues and nerves. In addition, exercise releases endorphins, a natural body chemical known to lessen pain and promote positive emotion.
You may need a physical therapist or healthcare provider to help design an individualized program to suit your needs.
Relaxing the muscles not only helps you relieve pain but also improves the quality of life. Stress causes muscle tension and adds up to the amount of pain.
Relaxation techniques allow the body to become in sync by calming the mind, lowering the number of stress hormones, and promoting a sense of well-being. When used regularly, they can cause long-term changes in the body to counter the damaging effects of stress.
Types of Relaxation Techniques
- Deep breathing
- Guided imagery
- Tai chi
Alternate medicine generally refers to any treatment or intervention that is used in place of conventional medicine. Alternative medicines have been present for centuries and used by our ancestors to treat illnesses.
Alternative treatments include:
- Herbal Medicines
- Nutritional supplements
- Chiropractic procedures
Modifying your space
Navigating can be difficult if the person is in pain. To assist in the management of pain, place objects that you always use within your reach. Rearrange your closets, shelves, and cabinets so it is easier for you to do your daily tasks with less stress.
Adjust your car by moving your driving seat so your foot can easily reach the pedal and you can easily look at the mirrors. You can also add lumbar support in your driving seat to aid in pain relief if you are experiencing low back pain.
Make necessary changes in your workstation so it is more ergonomic and prevents causing more stress in your body. Ensure that your chair is at the right height so your feet touch the floor comfortably. Make sure that the top of your computer screen is within eye level. You can also use lumbar support to avoid strains in your lower back area.
Continue doing your hobbies or discover a new passion. Doing this will help increase your endorphin levels and can promote a positive sense of well-being. This can be in the form of singing, baking, crochet, arts, reading books, watching movies, or anything that can make you feel good and happy.
Living in Pain
Chronic pain can be one of the most challenging conditions to live with. It takes time and patience for people who have been living with chronic pain for some time to find new ways of coping with their situation. If you are suffering from this difficult disease it is critical that your doctor or therapist guide you through educating yourself on how best to manage your symptoms so they don’t get worse over time.
Our team of medical professionals can help if you are experiencing chronic pain. Talk to us at Maplewood Sauk Prairie Health & Rehabilitation Wellness Center to discover your options.