Chronic pain is a type of pain that persists for at least four months. The pain feels sharp, causing an aching sensation in the affected part of the body. The pain can be intermittent, coming and going at any time, getting in the way of your daily routine activities.
A study done in 2019 states that, in the US alone, 20.4% of adults have chronic pain. The study also noted that chronic pain increases with age and is common among adults above sixty-five years.
Managing chronic pain is learning how to control the pain and continue with your daily activities with the best life quality. To address the pain, we have come up with tips that have proven effective. There is a great resource for chronic pain management at the Rolling Paper.
Before we discuss those pain management strategies, let’s highlight some of the leading causes of chronic pain.
- Traumatic injury.
- Improperly carrying and lifting heavy objects.
- Congenital conditions like the curvature of the spine.
- Wearing high heels.
- Years of poor posture.
- Sleeping on a worn-out mattress.
- Ageing of the spine.
Ways to Help You Manage Chronic Pain
Using painkillers is the standard solution that most people with chronic pain find best. There are many medications in the market to help you manage pain. Different people have different responses to drugs. Some people only need potent medication like an opioid, while others may need strong medicines like non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
Most people run for over-the-counter drugs like acetaminophen, aspirin, or ibuprofen, which is not strong enough. Chronic pain patients need prescription medications from doctors. Whatever medicine your doctors you depend on the levels of pain, treatment plan, and overall health.
Other effective medications you can take for chronic pain include:
2. CBD oil
Researchers conclude that the compound CBD found in cannabis is effective in chronic pain management based on several research studies. Another study done in 2016 also suggests that the topical application of CBD can reduce inflammation.
CBD can be used in different ways. One common way is through CBD oil. To get the CBD oil, the CBD compounds are directly taken from the cannabis or hemp plant and suffused into different individual oils.
A survey done on chronic pain patients reported that using CBD oil gave them the pain-relieving properties as prescription medication. If you consider using CBD oil for pain relief, check out Zamnesia.
Exercise is one common way to treat chronic pain. However, exercising depends on your current condition of health. You may be having very intense pain that does not allow you even to lift a muscle. Exercise mainly helps reduce inflammation, boost mobility, and reduce general pain.
When you exercise the right way, you might realize that you don’t need additional medication for the pain. Some activities you can do include:
All these simple activities reduce chronic pain by obstructing pain signals to the brain. Keeping active with simple exercises also reduces pain by stretching tense and stiff muscles, joints and ligaments.
4. Physical Therapy
Pain experts recommend a course of physical therapy. The therapy primarily relieves the pain, helps you move easier and better, and makes day-to-day activities like going upstairs, walking, or getting into and out of bed trouble-free.
Physical therapy for never-ending pain mainly involves stretching exercises, pain-relief workouts, and manipulation. Physical therapy can be delivered by a chiropractor, physiotherapist, occupational therapist, or an osteopath.
Physiotherapists advise you on the proper exercise and activity types that can work best on you depending on the pain persistence. Occupational therapists can help you recover, improve and maintain the right capabilities required for day-to-day working and living.
You start feeling relief after a few sessions of physical therapy. You may find physical therapy stations in hospitals, but most of them have been privately established.
5. Go to Work
Despite the pain, try and still attend your workplace. When you don’t work, you’ll probably be less active and might even suffer depression. Being at work will keep you social and distract you from the pain.
Consider talking to your boss about the job parts that might be hard for you to do but stress that you’d still want to work. If you have to take a break from work, try and report back as soon as possible.
The pain management strategies we have discussed above will produce better results when used together and consistently. It is recommended you also do your homework and research on other ways. Try several tips until you find one or two that work best for you.
When the pain persists, you can run by your healthcare provider, who can prescribe other options.