Treat your pain and live a better life…

best-pain-doctor-nycWelcome to my blog about pain. Unfortunately, many people suffer from chronic pain. As a board certified physician in physical medicine and rehabilitation, my specialty is treating these people with both acute and chronic pain.

A majority of my practice is working with patients that are experiencing back and neck pain.

My goal with this blog is to help patients who are experiencing any type of back or neck pain to understand what is causing their pain and discuss options that are available to end their pain. I hope to be able to provide readers with a portal that they can can use to educate themselves and facilitate treatment.

My specialty is my Interventional Spine Skills including cervical and lumbar epidural steroid injections, facet injections, medial branch blocks, Radiofrequency ablation, sympathetic ganglion blocks, spinal cord stimulator trials, sacroiliac joint injection, piriformis muscle block and musculoskeletal joint injection. I also perform many other procedures to alleviate acute and chronic pain.

I hope you enjoy reading my blog as much as I enjoy writing it and observing people from all over the world reading it.

– Matthew Grimm, M.D.

Arthritis, What is it?

It is estimated that 350 million people all over the world suffer from arthritis, including roughly 40 million in the U.S. This condition can range greatly in severity and there are different types of arthritis. Even some very young people get diagnosed with this condition due to their genetic makeup. It can be a mildly irritating condition for some, and a constant debilitating struggle for others.

What Is Arthritis?

arthritisArthritis is essentially inflammation of the joints that causes the cartilage tissue on the ends of the bones to deteriorate over time. Rheumatoid arthritis, the most common type, is classified as an autoimmune disorder that affects the lining of the joints.
Certain conditions, including lupus and psoriasis, can eventually lead to a person developing arthritis. Most people with arthritis experience joint pain to some degree, and it is called arthralgia. It is known as polyarthritis when four or more of a person’s joints are affected. Many people with this condition inherited it from their parents.

Symptoms

There are many different symptoms that a person can experience, including:

  • Stiffnessarthritis
  • Difficulty walking (limping)
  • Swelling of the joints
  • Warm sensation in the joints
  • Decreased range of motion
  • Weakness
  • Tenderness of the joints

A vast majority of people experience inflammation of the joints. Some people experience severe pain while others don’t have any pain at all. Sometimes, arthritis can actually affect a person’s organs, leading to swelling of the lymph nodes, fatigue, weight loss, and fever.

Treatment

Treatment depends entirely on the type of arthritis a person has. The more accurate the diagnosis is, the more effective the treatment will be.

arthritisDoctors often recommend that patients take over-the-counter pain medication like Ibuprofen and Tylenol to manage their joint swelling and discomfort. These medications can be quite effective for many people with this condition.

Some people with rheumatoid arthritis have to take certain prescription medications that can negatively impact their immune systems. Arthritis in the lower back can irritate the spinal nerves, sometimes requiring a surgical procedure to alleviate symptoms.

There is no cure, but there are a number of effective treatments for managing the symptoms on a daily basis.

If you are struggling with joint pain caused by arthritis, let us help. Make an appointment with us today so our nationally renowned NYC pain doctor can relieve your discomfort.

If you are experiencing any type of pain at all, we highly encourage you to call us today at 646-862-5555 to schedule an appointment with the best pain doctor in all of New York City.

What is Fibromyalgia?

Chronic pain can be extremely difficult for anyone to deal with and fibromyalgia affects millions of people all across the country. While most people have heard of this condition before, few people actually know what it really is. Considering that 10 million people in the U.S. alone have this condition, it’s important that you take the time to learn about it.

What Is Fibromyalgia?

fibromyalgiaFibromyalgia is a condition that causes chronic pain that is typically felt throughout the entire body. Those who have this condition can experience pain in one area and then another over time. The symptoms can increase and decrease in severity over a period of years. Approximately 2-4% of the entire U.S. population has been diagnosed with fibromyalgia.

Symptoms

There are a number of symptoms that someone with fibromyalgia can experience. Some of the more common symptoms associated with this condition include:

  • painMuscle pain (burning, aching, twitching)
  • Increased sensitivity to pain
  • Severe fatigue
  • Difficulty concentrating on simple tasks
  • Trouble getting to sleep
  • General nervous or anxious feeling
  • Depression

The symptoms of fibromyalgia vary greatly from person to person. Some people experience very mild symptoms for a long time followed by intense bursts of pain. It can be difficult to diagnose this condition, but doctors typically look for the symptoms listed above. Most people who have fibromyalgia feel tired and weak almost all the time.

Treatment

While there is currently no cure for fibromyalgia, there are various treatments that have proven to be quite effective at managing the symptoms it causes.

Many people with this condition use over-the-counter pain medications to help with the inflammation and muscle aches that are associated with fibromyalgia. Since depression is also a common symptom of fibromyalgia, antidepressants are often prescribed by a doctor.fibromyalgia

Some anticonvulsant medications have also proven effective when it comes to managing the dizziness, weight gain, swelling, and dry mouth that many of these people experience.

The three main pain medications that are prescribed to many fibromyalgia patients include Duloxetine, Milnacipran, and Pregabalin. It’s important to keep in mind that while there are effective medications for managing this type of pain, opioids are typically not a viable long-term solution.

If you suffer from fibromyalgia and need help with managing your symptoms, make an appointment with us right away. We have one of the best NYC pain doctors in the country to help relieve your symptoms effectively.

If you are experiencing any type of pain at all, we highly encourage you to call us today at 646-862-5555 to schedule an appointment with the best pain doctor in all of New York City.

An Overview of the Different Types of Pain

There are many different types of pain that a person can experience. Pain can vary greatly in severity, as well as how it is experienced by people. The more you know about pain, the easier it will be to describe what you are feeling to a doctor.

The following is a list that describes each type of pain in detail. You will find that each type of pain has its own defining characteristics and qualities.

Chronic Pain

Chronic pain is experienced over a long period of time, whether it is a matter of weeks or years. This type of pain typically lasts three months or more. There are a number of conditions that can cause chronic pain to occur, but for most people, it all begins with some sort of injury or physical trauma.

Nerve Pain

painNerve pain, also known as neuropathic pain, usually presents as a stabbing or burning sensation. Sometimes it goes away without any real treatment, but it can also be chronic. This is one of the worst types of pain a person can experience, and it often occurs as a direct result of damage to the nerves.

Psychogenic Pain

Psychogenic pain is pain that has some sort of psychological component to it. Many people who experience this type of pain say that the physical sensations they are experiencing don’t fit with their symptoms. Some of the more common ways that psychogenic pain can present include back pain, muscle aches, stomach pain, and migraines. A person can only be diagnosed with psychogenic pain once all other explanations have been excluded.

Musculoskeletal Pain

painMusculoskeletal pain is often caused by regular wear and tear of the muscle tissue over a long period of time. This type of pain is felt in tendons, muscles, ligaments, and bones in the body. Some of the common causes of musculoskeletal pain include car accidents, slip-and-fall accidents, and dislocations. Someone with this kind of pain might complain that everything in their body aches.

Joint Pain

painJoint pain affects the joints in the body, which are the areas between the bones. There are a lot of conditions that can cause joint pain to occur, including rheumatoid arthritis, gout, and sprains. This type of pain can be very mild to severe, depending on the cause.

If you are experiencing any type of pain at all, we highly encourage you to call us today at 646-862-5555 to schedule an appointment with the best pain doctor in all of New York City.

Natural Solutions for Pain Management

There is a myriad of natural solutions for managing one’s pain, and the more you know about them the better your chances will be of getting the relief you need. If you don’t want to take traditional medicine because of all the potentially harmful side-effects that come with it, you will certainly want to take a look at this list of alternative treatments.

A Professional Massage

One of the best natural ways to relieve pain involves massage therapy. You might just be surprised at how good you feel after being massaged by a qualified, licensed professional. Massage therapists specialize in helping to relieve people’s pain, so you will want to consider visiting one in your area in the near future.

Natural Supplements

natural solutions to pain management You will find tons of natural supplements with ingredients that can effectively treat pain, but without all of the harmful side-effects that come with prescription drugs. It’s important that you do your research into these products, so you can find the right one to take.

Acupuncture

Whether you are suffering from chronic back pain, sciatica, fibromyalgia or some other painful condition, acupuncture is also worth a try. This is a very old but effective practice that dates all the way back to ancient times. It has been used as a means of relieving pain and treating a wide range of health problems in Chinese medicine for many hundreds of years. Just make sure that you find a qualified professional in your area for these services.

Hypnosis

A lot of people are very skeptical about trying hypnosis at first, but there are many who are glad they did. When you think of it more as the power of suggestion, you might be a little more likely to give it a shot. If you are in a lot of pain and need relief, you should at least try seeing a licensed hypnotherapist once.

Meditation

Meditation is all about learning how to center yourself mentally, and it can be very beneficial for those who need an effective way to cope with pain. When you become truly skilled at meditating, you might find that you can actually block out some of the pain you feel on a regular basis.

We specialize in pain management to provide relief quickly and effectively, so make an appointment with our office today. You’ll see the best pain doctor in NYC to help you manage your pain so you don’t have to keep suffering.

Living with Chronic Pain: How to Cope

There is no question that living with chronic pain can be extremely difficult, but there are numerous ways that you can cope with it. It is absolutely essential that anyone with this type of problem learns how to deal with in a healthy way, as soon as possible.

Practice Deep Breathing

 

One of the best things that you can do when it comes to coping with chronic pain is to practice deep breathing. Certain breathing exercises can help you relax your body physically and mentally, allowing the pain to melt away, at least for a little while. While this is just a short-term solution, it can help a lot if you are trying to find a way to cope with chronic pain.

Find Ways to Cut Down on Stress

chronic pain

The better you become at managing your stress levels, the easier it will be to cope with your pain. Mental or emotional stress can quickly translate to real physical pain, so it is imperative that you learn how to do this. There are many ways to reduce the amount of stress you experience on a daily basis, such meditating or listening to soothing music when you feel yourself getting worked up.

Stay Physically Active

It is a fact that exercising can release endorphins in the brain, which in turn can produce a euphoric state of mind. If you want a quick way to feel good in every possible way, you will definitely want to try hitting the gym. While you may be somewhat limited in the things you can do because of your condition, you should be able to find numerous ways to stay physically active.

Join a Support Group

Sometimes it really helps to be around other people who are going through the same thing as you. A lot of people with chronic pain feel as though nobody understands them, so joining a group specifically for people who have chronic pain issues can definitely be beneficial.

Try Massage Therapy

Massage therapy can be very effective at temporarily relieving even the worst chronic pain, so it’s definitely something you should at least look into. The right professional will have you feeling relaxed in no time at all.

While it’s certainly not easy to cope with chronic pain, there are quite a few options available. Make an appointment with our office today to see the best pain doctor in NYC, so you can get help with your chronic pain issues.

The Relationship Between Chronic Pain and Depression

There is a well-established connection between chronic pain and depression. This connection is physical and very real. Numerous scientific studies have revealed that chronic pain sufferers are four times more likely to develop some sort of mood disorder, including depression. It has also been established that people who are depressed are also more likely to have issues with chronic pain. The more pain a person is in, the more likely they are to struggle with depression.

The Structure of the Brain

Imaging studies have revealed that there are numerous parts of the brain that relate to both pain and the development of various mood disorders like depression. This conclusively proves a connection between chronic pain and depression at a scientific level. There are also certain neurotransmitters that receive signals telling us that we are in pain that also regulate our moods.

Managing Your Pain and Depression

chronic painIt can be very difficult to manage chronic pain by itself, but it becomes even more challenging when depression is an issue as well. A combination of medication and therapy can be extremely effective for treating chronic pain sufferers who also struggle with a mood disorder. There are many natural treatments that should be explored as well. Relief can seem impossible to some people with these problems, but there are lots of effective treatments that exist.

Techniques for Reducing Stress

chronic painSometimes, reducing one’s stress level can be enough to get a significant amount of relief from both physical and mental pain. There is a multitude of ways that you can reduce your stress level, including meditation, exercise, listening to relaxing music, and many others. Studies have proven that when a person’s overall stress level decreases, they also get relief from the pain they are in.

Symptoms of Depression

There are a number of telltale signs that a person with chronic pain is depressed, and it’s important that you are aware of them.

  • Changes in sleeping habits
  • Eating more or less than usual
  • Feeling tired all the time (fatigue)
  • Irritability/mood changes
  • Feelings of guilt and/or despair

If you find that you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important that you seek out help immediately. Let us help you with the pain you are experiencing, whatever kind it may be. The best pain doctor in NYC is in our office, and he will help you to feel better overall.

Is Medication the Best Treatment Option for Pain?

While many people believe that medication is the best treatment option for pain, the fact is that there are almost always alternatives that can and should be explored. Prescription and over-the-counter medications can be very effective in treating all different types of pain, but they are certainly not the only option available to you.

Benefits of Natural Pain Treatments

painYou will find that there are many benefits associated with some of the more natural treatments for pain, such as fewer or no harmful side-effects. Pretty much all medications come with a list of potential side-effects, and certain ones can really put your health and well-being at risk. Sometimes these natural treatments are an even better treatment for pain because they work just as well but do not come with any of the side-effects.

It All Depends on the Condition

pain

When trying to determine whether or not medication is the best treatment for pain, it’s important to consider the condition itself and the severity of the pain. Sometimes, medication can be the best option, but this is not always the case.

 

 

Explore Your Options

If you are in pain and need to get relief, it is important that you are aware of all your options, including different medications. You don’t want to discount medication entirely, but there are sometimes better, more natural solutions available. These days, more and more people are turning to natural pain remedies because they can be as effective if not more so than traditional medication. Some medications are a fairly low risk with a limited number of potential side-effects.

Alternatives to Pain Medications

It’s very important that you know about some of the different alternatives to traditional pain medications that exist, so you can make the best possible choice.

Acupuncture is just one of the many alternative treatments for pain, and it is very low-risk. It essentially involves inserting needles into pressure points on your body, and it has shown promise in treating many different types of pain.

There are certain natural supplements that can be taken to relieve pain, and they too can be very helpful in getting relief without all of the side-effects. Sometimes exercise and physical therapy can be incredibly helpful in treating pain as well. You should speak with your doctor before trying out any alternative pain treatments though.

Managing pain by yourself can be quite a challenge, so schedule an appointment with us today so we can help. You will receive top-notch treatment from the best pain doctor in all of NYC.

How Can an Exercise Program Reduce Pain?

How Can an Exercise Program Reduce Pain?It may not seem logical. You are in pain any time you move. Your body hurts. And, your doctor wants you to start exercises. How can you do that without further injuring yourself or struggling with significant pain throughout the process? For many people, this may not seem like the logical solution. However, it can be exactly what you need to see improvement in your flexibility, mobility, and overall pain levels. It is important to work closely with your pain management doctor in New York City to achieve the right type of care and the best type of exercise program for your individual needs.

Improving Your Health

How Can an Exercise Program Reduce Pain?Exercise programs can be highly effective for many people facing a wide range of pain areas. For example, it can be one of the best ways to improve pain associated with the back or joints. Exercise can help these individuals to see improvement in the function of the impacted area. It can also help you to stay flexible when you are facing limited movement overall. In addition to this, exercise can help to improve your tolerance for pain itself. This can offer individuals the ability to take on tasks they need to without experiencing the same level of type of pain.

What You Should Know About Exercise and Pain

There are limitations to this type of outcome, though. For example, while exercise can help to reduce your pain, it can still make you further injured if you do not put the right time and attention into what you are doing. In short, you need to keep these things in mind:

    • You should only work with a pain doctor to create an exercise regimen that’s right for your needs. Don’t assume that any type or amount of exercise will help.
    • You’ll need to monitor your progress to avoid pushing yourself too far. Over doing it will worsen your symptoms, not improve them.
    • And, if you experience worsening pain, you should stop and talk to your doctor about it.

How Can an Exercise Program Reduce Pain?For many people with chronic pain, exercise programs can be beneficial. For this to occur, though, you’ll need to invest in the right exercise program designed to treat the pain you have. For that, you’ll want to work closely with your skilled and experienced pain management doctor in New York City. Our team can help you find the support you need.

3 Relaxation Techniques to Reduce Pain

3 Relaxation Techniques to Reduce PainReducing pain isn’t an easy process, but for men and women experiencing chronic levels of pain, any solution is worth trying. Relaxing could be that solution. How can you relax when you are struggling with so much pain? It is not always easy to do, especially when the pain has you focusing specifically on it instead of on what is happening throughout your life. The fact is, if you can incorporate a few relaxation techniques into your day, you may be able to see a significant reduction in the amount of pain you have during that timeframe. These methods can help.

#1: Visualization

3 Relaxation Techniques to Reduce PainVisualization is one of the fundamentals of improving pain levels. In short, you’ll want to close your eyes and visualize – actually see in your mind’s eye – something that represents pain to you. It could be a color or shape. It could even be a motion. Then, change the imagine in your mind to something that is more enjoyable and pleasing to you. This helps alleviate your pain.

#2: Write it Down

Keeping a diary is another way to reduce the amount of pain you have. It can help you to review your daily routine as well as the stressors that could be worsening your symptoms. It not only can provide insight into what is happening and causing increased pain, but it can give you some realization that can help you to feel better about your current situation.

#3: Consider electromyographic biofeedback

3 Relaxation Techniques to Reduce PainIn short, you’ll learn how muscle tension is worsening your pain and it can help you to control it. This can help you to see improvement. In addition, you can use self-hypnosis as a treatment option along with this understanding. It can help you to either transform your pain into something good or help you to refocus your thoughts.

The key here is to realize that you remain very much in control over the pain you feel. When you learn these types of pain relaxation techniques, you can see the pain improve. You’ll be able to see improvement in the way you feel as well as in your frame of mind. For many people with chronic pain, this type of relaxation can help to change their outlook and give them a new opportunity to feel better about their life and their future.

Contact our New York pain doctor today at 646-862-5555 to discuss your needs and to find out what treatment options may be exactly what you need.

Can Aquatic Therapy Help with Pain Management?

Can Aquatic Therapy Help with Pain ManagementFor some people, aquatic therapy is the best type of pain management solution. If the thought of jumping into a pool and going for a swim sounds like fun, and not hard work to relieve pain, think again. It can be both! This type of treatment provides you with numerous advantages and it provides an opportunity for you to see significant improvement to the way you feel without actually creating additional stress on your joints. For many people, this is the best type of pain management for their underlying condition.

What Are the Benefits of Aquatic Therapy?

The use of aquatic therapy is very common by pain management doctors because of how effective it can be. This process works to encourage natural healing of the musculoskeletal system. It can work for most people. It is effective for those who are of any age, who have any type of ability, and who have most types of diagnoses. There are many potential benefits to it. This type of therapy is often customized to meet the individual needs of the patient. Some of the areas of treatment that may help individuals include those suffering with:

    • Can Aquatic Therapy Help with Pain ManagementMuscle strength needs
    • Improvement or sustaining the gait
    • Improving endurance of muscle use
    • Body mechanic improvement
    • Coordination improvement
    • Functional improvement
    • Balance
    • Agility
    • Flexibility improvement
    • Posture

These types of conditions can be worsened by traditional workouts. For example, the process of working on a treadmill to improve gait can strain muscles with each step. This is due to the amount of force and motion. However, in the water, this does not happen. There is much less stress on the joints and muscles during a workout session. Most people also feel more relaxed and comfortable during therapy sessions when they are done in the water.

Why does this happen? The aquatic environment helps to encourage the injured muscle to improve in a safe environment. The muscle uses muscle memory without any impact or weight bearing to make the motions necessary. This also allows for the individual to use the water itself to help reduce their weight and its impact on the body.

Can Aquatic Therapy Help with Pain ManagementFor those who are struggling with pain, the use of aquatic therapy is generally a very good option. It is not the only option for pain management though. It is up to the individual and their doctor to seek out care that fits their needs.

Contact our New York pain doctor today at 646-862-5555 to discuss your needs and to find out what treatment options may be exactly what you need.