Chronic pain is when you experience severe pain for longer periods. This pain can affect any part of your body, such as the head, lower back, and legs. Sometimes, the pain persists, and sometimes, it comes and goes. The drawback of chronic pain is that it interferes with your day-to-day activities and personal life, making it difficult for you to function properly.
Within time, you might get used to the pain, or it could get worse. It is important to treat chronic pain, but for the proper treatment, you must learn of the cause behind your chronic pain. Mentioned below are some possible chronic pain causes and treatments.
What Causes Chronic Pain?
Chronic pain can occur either knowingly or unknowingly. In some cases, the pain develops suddenly and persists for as long periods until you start getting it treated properly. The intensity of the pain can get worse, and it’s a must to receive medical help, especially when you’re not sure about the cause behind the pain. Mentioned below are some common causes behind chronic pain.
Chronic pain can derive from any injury, even if it has already healed. The pain from an injury can spark up anytime, causing severe discomfort. Chronic injury pain can also be the result of surgical incisions and different infections. Mentioned below are the types of injuries that most commonly cause chronic pain:
- Back pain
- Nerve Damage
- Lyme Disease
- Acid Reflux
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
- Broken Bones
2. Psychological Causes
Chronic pain has a lot to do with the way we think and act, as nerve impulses keep triggering the brain. In some cases, psychological and social factors play a major role in causing chronic pain. When you’re in a state of emotional sadness and feel anxious, these emotions signal chronic pain. Sometimes, they can even worsen it. Social factors, such as poor job satisfaction, financial issues at home, or family issues, can aggravate chronic pain as you’re in a constant state of stress. Stress doesn’t just worsen chronic pain, but it can also cause it. This is why it’s a must to treat it if it’s due to psychological factors.
How to Treat Chronic Pain
Mentioned below are different treatment options for chronic pain:
Before asking your doctor for medication, it’s good to make a few good lifestyle changes that might help relieve chronic pain. The best way to manage pain is through regular physical exercise. You need exercise to treat chronic pain as it helps relieve body pain, gets you better sleep at night, releases endorphins, and strengthens muscles.
Chinese medicine, such and acupuncture, and acupressure are a few options to relieve pain as well. These methods prompt the body to release endorphins, which block pain signals going to the brain.
You can start off with some common OTC medications, such as Tylenol and NSAIDs. NSAIDs include medication such as ibuprofen, naproxen, and aspirin. These can provide mild relief from chronic pain and help with swelling and inflammation. You can combine these medicines with other treatments, such as physical therapy and relaxation techniques.
If the pain is unbearable, your doctor will prescribe stronger medication. According to The American Chronic Pain Association (ACPA), different medication types specifically target chronic pain. These are Opioids such as morphine, adjuvant analgesics such as antidepressants, and non-opioid such as NSAIDs. Antidepressants are the best form of prescribed medication to treat chronic pain as they also help improve psychological symptoms such as depressive mood and anxiety.
You may have to get a surgical implant if medications don’t work. Different surgical implants are available to treat chronic pain. You can get one such implant in your spinal cord. The implant adjusts the pain signals that go to the brain.
Biofeedback is a common pain management technique that uses relies on physical characteristics, such as brain activity, muscle tension, skin temperature, and heart rate. This technique keeps you aware of how you can keep both physical and emotional pain under control.
Other Treatment Options
- Relaxation techniques such as yoga, massage, and meditation
- Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS)
- Cognitive Therapy
Conclusion: Consult A Specialist to Help Manage Your Chronic Pain
It is important to seek medical help the moment you start experiencing chronic pain. Hopefully, these chronic pain causes and treatments will help you understand the pain better so you can treat it properly. For the best chronic pain treatment services in New York, get in touch with Mathew Grimm, M.D.