Pain Edu: Chronic Pain

Pain Edu: Chronic Pain

What is chronic pain?

Anyone experiencing pain for more than 12 weeks is in chronic pain. As opposed to acute pain, which wanes as you heal, chronic pain persists for months or even years. This type of pain significantly reduces your quality of life as well as those close to you. Chronic pain can take a heavy toll physically, emotionally, and socially. It’s hard to be at your best or enjoy things when you’re suffering.

Pain Edu: Introduction to Chronic Pain

Are you experiencing pain that has persisted for months or years? Click on this video to learn more about chronic pain and steps you can take to manage it.

Main types of chronic pain

Nociceptive

Nociceptive Pain

This is most commonly what we think of when we think of pain. Harmful stimuli is detected in the body by specialized sensory nerves called nociceptors. Upon detection these receptors send a signal to the nervous system for response ie pain.

Somatic

Somatic Pain

Pain detected in the body's skin, muscles, or soft tissue is known as somatic. Because there are a large number of nerves in these tissues pain is experienced locally and its cause is easier to diagnose. An example might be a headache or pricked finger.

Visceral

Visceral Pain

Visceral pain refers to pain in the body's internal organs. Since there are less sensory nerves pain may feel dull and harder to locate.

Neuropathic

Neuropathic Pain

Neuropathic pain is caused by abnormal behavior of nerves causing spontaneous pain signals to the brain and spinal cord that trigger an acute response. These pains are often felt as sharp or "shooting".

Psychogenic

Psychogenic Pain

This type of pain is caused by psychological disorders but often have physical complications. An example of psychogenic pain is depression. While the pain is harder to describe and treat, it is very real and often benefit from non-pharmaceutical treatments.

Idiopathic

Idiopathic Pain

When pain exists without known cause, neither physical nor psychological it is said to be idiopathic. A lack of apparent cause does not diminish its affect on sufferers. An example may be fibromyalgia.

What can you do if you suffer chronic pain?

The solution to your chronic pain depends on the source of your pain and type of injury you may have sustained. The first step is to consult with your doctor and discuss their recommendations for treating the pain in your back. Your doctor may recommend restrictions on specific activities, medication and/or physical therapy. You can try the following steps now to help alleviate your pain.

1

Stretching and Exercise

Chronic pain can lead to people remaining in positions that are more comfortable for long periods of time. Sedentary behavior can actually increase stiffness and pain in the long term. It is important to keep active and limber as possible.

2

Hot and Cold packs

Use cold packs to reduce inflammation, swelling, and pain while heating pads can relax muscles.

3

Stay Positive

It’s tough to keep a positive attitude when your in constant pain but it can significantly aid in your ability to cope and not give in. Try and do things you enjoy.

4

Physical therapy

With hands-on treatment to loosen muscles and joints you’ll feel some immediate relief. We’ll continue with education on proper posture and movements that decrease pain as well as instruction on stretching and strengthening exercises. 

Exercises for chronic pain

The following are some stretches and exercises that you can try to help decrease your chronic pain. Please consult your physician before trying these, and stop if you experience any increase in pain or discomfort. In addition there are several daily activities that may help such as walking, deep breathing, and yoga.

Piriformis Stretches

Prayer Stretch

Dead Bug Exercise

Waiter Tips

Shoulder Rolls

Pelvic Tilts

What can we do for your chronic pain?

Schedule an appointment for a free consultation with one of our expert staff and find out how we can get you back on your feet.

Request Free Pain Consultation
×