You’ve suffered from post-surgical pain for months. Even though you’ve recovered, pain lingers, sometimes becoming unbearable. What can you do to relieve the discomfort of arthritis, back pain, or another kind of chronic pain? Understanding chronic pain and possible causes will help you determine the best way to relieve symptoms.
WHAT IS CHRONIC PAIN?
“Chronic pain is long-standing pain that persists beyond the usual recovery period or occurs along with a chronic health condition, such as arthritis. Chronic pain may be ‘on’ and ‘off’ or continuous. It may affect people to the point that they can’t work, eat properly, take part in physical activity, or enjoy life,” according to the experts at Johns Hopkins Medicine.
Chronic pain is a serious medical condition you can treat with proper care.
TYPES OF CHRONIC PAIN
There are many kinds of chronic pain caused by injury, illness, a surgical procedure, and even mental illness. The most common kinds of chronic pain include:
- Low back pain
- Hip and knee osteoarthritis
- Hand osteoarthritis
- Shingles nerve pain
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Tension headaches and migraines
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Plantar fasciitis
- Menstrual pain
Did you know that symptoms of chronic pain can be managed with ketamine treatment?
THE CAUSES OF CHRONIC PAIN
Though it’s not always the case, some kinds of chronic pain have an obvious cause. You could suffer from a lengthy illness like arthritis or cancer resulting in ongoing pain. But diseases and injuries can also change your body and leave you more vulnerable to pain. These changes can remain even after you’ve recovered from the original disease or injury. Typical examples which can leave you with chronic pain include a broken bone, a sprain, or a short-term infection.
“Some people also have chronic pain that’s not tied to an injury or physical illness. Healthcare providers call this response psychogenic pain or psychosomatic pain. It’s caused by psychological factors such as stress, anxiety and depression. Many scientists believe this connection comes from low levels of endorphins in the blood. Endorphins are natural chemicals that trigger positive feelings.”
Multiple sources can overlap, including disease or something like migraines and psychogenic pain.
9 ESSENTIAL ITEMS FOR CHRONIC PAIN
How do you manage chronic pain? There are many different strategies, items, and therapies you can try, for example:
- An app for your smartphone or mobile device. According to some studies, healthcare providers including primary care physicians could work with app developers to create more robust programs to help patients manage chronic pain, beyond the realm of mere distraction.
- An electric or battery-powered heating pad. In some cases, warm heat in the 92 to 100-degree range can help relieve the discomfort of chronic pain related to arthritis.
- Flotation REST. Many studies have shown that floating in a sensory deprivation tank can be useful for some people who suffer from chronic pain.
- Foam rollers may help patients who have chronic pain associated with scar tissue which has built up in muscle and fascia, according to Jordan D. Metzl, a sports medicine physician at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York. A study with a small group of patients at Canada’s Memorial University of Newfoundland “found that knee range of motion—or how far the knee can bend—increased significantly when measured two minutes and 10 minutes following a two-minute foam-rolling session.”
- A trigger point massager. These hand-held devices can be used instead of paying for massage therapy. The device works to relieve pain in a hyperirritable nodule or knot that can be found in connective tissue and muscle tissue in hundreds of places on the human body, according to Spring Saldana, massage therapy program chair at Northwestern Health Sciences University.
- Anti-inflammatory drinks for arthritis. The Arthritis Foundation says that people suffering from chronic pain need to stay hydrated throughout the day. Top beverages to fight the discomfort of chronic pain include tea, coffee, milk, juices, smoothies, and water.
- Aromatherapy for temporary arthritis relief.
- Ketamine therapy for chronic pain.
KETAMINE FOR CHRONIC PAIN
Years of research has found that ketamine therapy is an effective relief for chronic pain symptoms related to injury, illness, surgical procedures, and mental illness. Ketamine is a type of medicine first used as an anesthetic and works to repair and strengthen neurotransmitters in the brain critical for transmitting pain signals throughout the body. It may help with chronic pain symptoms non-responsive to other treatments.