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Chronic aches and pains: Finally finding relief

chronic pain and treatment options

A recent CDC analysis shows disturbingly high statistics about chronic pain sufferers, and help for them in the US is needed more than ever. When the CDC analyzed 2016 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) data, they learned that about 50 million U.S. adults (roughly 20%) had chronic pain and almost 20 million had high-impact chronic aches and pains. Furthermore, more women reported both chronic pain and high-impact chronic pain than men. When looking for pain relief, what to do?

Addressing chronic pain is essential

The reasons why chronic pain sufferers are more women than men aren’t clear. But these findings do show a significant public health problem exists.

Unfortunately, It can be difficult to find effective therapy or even a firm diagnosis in many cases. Chronic pain can go hand in hand with depression too. That makes coping with the problem that much harder.

So, what are your options when it comes to managing the pain and leading a more comfortable life?

Defining chronic aches

In simple terms, it is any pain that lasts beyond the time when it performs a useful function. It’s then the main problem rather than a symptom. There are many possible causes of chronic pain, which can make it hard to get to the root of the problem.

Your doctor will probably need to run a series of tests and examinations to find the cause. It’s important to eliminate potential causes like cancer and organ diseases that need prompt treatment.

Chronic pain can be a severe side effect of some life-threatening illnesses. But, for most sufferers, the causes are benign. Although it can be a relief to know you don’t have a serious health issue like cancer, it doesn’t lower your discomfort.

To manage chronic pain, many people look for options aside from medications that can be habit-forming. An alternative method is CBD, and using a Medterra coupon is a way to save money in the process.

Many disorders, including autoimmune conditions, fibromyalgia, and osteoarthritis have no cure, so this diagnosis can feel like a life sentence.

Chronic aches and pains diagnosis

The first step to receiving effective treatment, such as physical therapy, is an accurate diagnosis. This can be a time-consuming process, but getting to the bottom of why you experience continual pain will clarify the available options.

Your doctor should be your first call. But there are also specialist pain clinics that offer an increased range of diagnostic testing and cutting-edge treatment options. The way you look after yourself and manage your pain can also significantly affect how well you cope and your degree of discomfort.

Pain medications

Analgesic drugs are often the first step toward chronic pain relief. But while it makes sense for providing almost instant relief from the symptoms, it doesn’t answer the problem.

Painkillers only mask the pain sensations. They don’t address the cause of the pain, so they must be taken long-term to keep working.

Therefore, you may have unwanted side effects from the medication. You might even find it necessary to increase the dose over time. That is because your body gets used to the particular drug.

Opioid painkillers are often the most effective path for chronic pain, but the severe problem with opioid abuse across the US. That makes doctors reluctant to prescribe them. For these reasons, it’s advisable to look for other therapies.

Specialty therapies

There are many treatments available to address the causes of chronic aches and pains. Some examples are:

  • Physical therapy to manage and prevent injuries. Work to become stronger and more independent than before as time passes.
  • Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections. The healing platelets from your blood are extracted and then injected into the painful area. The goal is to improve the healing and regeneration of damaged tissues.
  • Stem cell therapy. It has the same kind of process as PRP but uses stem cells from either your own body or donated placental tissue harvested after healthy births.
  • A nerve-blocking injection. It prevents pain signals from reaching the brain.
  • Injections of natural compounds promote healing and tissue regeneration to help chronic pain sufferers.

Physical therapy

You might feel like moving around is the last thing you want to do. But, exercise is one of the most effective options for pain relief.

That doesn’t mean you have to go for a run around the block or start doing circuits at the gym though. Most chronic pain sufferers would feel ill at the thought of such intensive physical activity.

Regular, gentle exercises, such as yoga, Pilates, Thai Chi, and swimming, are great ways to keep your body moving in ways that can ease your pain. You can start off with the gentlest of routines. Build up your strength, stamina, and flexibility over time.

Help your muscles stay strong too. Finally, maintain a relaxed and correct posture to avoid avoiding worsening your symptoms.

Alternative therapies for those who have chronic aches

Do you want to try an alternative therapy? If so, there are many options available. When it comes to helping chronic pain sufferers, many people swear by the effects of marijuana. They either smoke it or use CBD oil.

The laws on personal and medical uses of marijuana are in flux across the United States. So, check and see what laws apply in your state or another country where you live currently.

It’s a good idea to find out as much as you can about different cannabis strains. Also, research the differences between inhaling, ingesting, and using oils.

Most importantly, talk to your doctor before trying a pain-relief option like turmeric and CBD in one as the effects can vary significantly between people and you want to make sure you’re using what’s most effective for your unique issues.

Additionally, ketamine clinics and psychedelic therapies are becoming more popular around the globe, offering patients release from chronic pain, depression, and more.

Also, acupuncture has a solid evidence base. If you worry about feeling the needles or making the pain worse, rest assured that it is painless when done by a qualified practitioner.

Final words on chronic aches and pain relief

Your experience with chronic pain is unique to you. Each person feels pain in different ways and to varying degrees. For chronic pain sufferers, follow a self-care program. Keep pursuing treatments until you find one that works well for you.


Top photo credit: Unsplash

27 thoughts on “Chronic aches and pains: Finally finding relief”

  1. Ive been suffering with chronic pain since my fall downstairs 2 years ago, I am now going to an occupational therapy gym to try and strengthen the parts of my body that still cause me pain. Its a long road but hopefully one day it will be a distant memory. Enjoyed this post Christy.

    1. I hope the gym helps strengthen your body and make you feel more like ‘you’ again, Alison. My dad just started physio and he is looking forward to similar strengthening and more confidence. I’m cheering you on xx

    2. Thanks Christy, Its been a really long road for me. 2 years and Im still not back to normal but exercise in a safe environment is the only way forward. I have also started doing some Yoga for Seniors!! A starting point at least but i find it really beneficial. Not calling myself a senior yet though. :)

    3. Age is all in the mind, right Alison?!! I hope your yoga sessions are going well. My dad still has some bad days but I’m proud of him for still trying :)

    1. Those dreaded words – there’s nothing else to do. It’s both saddening and comforting though to find someone you can relate to. Hope you are doing as well as you can be.

    1. Yes! Sometimes the illness is incurable – as is mine, and physical therapy will not help. I will most likely continue pain to be in pain medicine forever. A positive attitude does help though! 🤷🏽‍♀️😊🙏🏽

    2. If pain meds are your only hope at a somewhat of a normal life since pain is hard to manage, I think you only have pain to loose by checking out these products!!! Good Luck

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