A Guide to Chronic Pain Management

Chronic pain management is crucial. Everyone experiences pain at some point in their lives. Whether it’s a sharp shoot after banging your elbow or the aches of an upset stomach, pain is an unfortunate aspect of existing. When you start to experience chronic pain, life can become unpleasant. 

By definition, chronic pain lasts for 12 weeks or more. It can arise without any history of an injury or operation. If you’re experiencing it, chances are you’re undergoing some significant mental and physical strains. Alongside making an appointment to manage your pain, it’s worth learning more about how you can address it. 

What chronic pain feels like

Everyone’s experience of chronic pain is different, so it isn’t easy to pinpoint exactly what it feels like. However, many describe it as sharp, dull, aching, or burning. You may also notice painful tingles in some areas or an overall unpleasant sensation accompanied by fatigue.

Alongside the physical sensations that come with chronic pain, it’s important to acknowledge the other ways it can make you feel:

  • Persistent tiredness or an inability to complete everyday activities
  • Anxiety and signs of depression
  • Feeling stiff
  • A sensation that your bones and muscles are weak

When you discuss every aspect of your condition with a professional, they’ll form a chronic pain management plan that addresses everything. It may help you to keep a diary of your symptoms so you feel confident discussing them with the people who provide your treatment.

Self-help for managing chronic pain

Chronic pain management can sometimes feel like an uphill battle. However, by routinely engaging in self-help measures, you can gain control of your condition. Doing so alongside seeking help from a professional can be empowering and life-changing.

Exercise

Exercise plays an important role in chronic pain management. You don’t need to do anything too strenuous. Instead, focus on gentle exercises that boost endorphins and stretch your muscles. Popular forms of exercise include swimming, walking, yoga, and stretching. It may help to speak to a physiotherapist who can recommend specific approaches for your condition. It’s also important to know that doing small amounts of exercise on your bad days is as important as reaching your goals on your good days.

Staying in work

Staying away from work may result in your symptoms worsening. You might also increase your risk of depression if you quit your job. If you’re finding that work is difficult, speak to a medical professional so they can discuss useful occupational adjustments. You may also want to speak to your boss or supervisors so that they have the chance to assist you. If you feel especially fatigued, it may be useful to reduce to part-time hours.

Professional help for chronic pain relief

If you’re seeking professional help for chronic pain, it’s best to take a multidisciplinary approach. Chronic pain can benefit from the attention of doctors, physiotherapists, and counselors. The type of treatment you’ll use may vary according to where you are in your journey and the symptoms you’re experiencing.

Medications for chronic pain

Medications for pain range from everyday off-the-shelf products to specialist targeted therapies. The types you’ll benefit from will vary according to the symptoms you’re experiencing. It’s important to get an accurate diagnosis and prescription from someone who understands chronic pain well. The team caring for you may also want to review your medications from time to time.

Mental health support

Battling with chronic pain can sometimes affect your mental health. For example, you may feel anxious about everyday activities. You might also experience signs of depression. Unfortunately, anxiety and depression can worsen your symptoms. It’s for that reason that seeking counseling is important. With the right techniques, you can bring a sense of balance to your well-being and feel confident in managing your condition.

Chronic pain physiotherapy

Physiotherapy can become one of your most useful tools in managing chronic pain. An experienced physiotherapist can guide you through exercises and give you advice on using them at home. With the right approach, you can improve your function and your movement.

Living with chronic pain

Chronic pain can easily touch every area of your day-to-day life. Fortunately, having the right support in place and emboldening yourself with knowledge can make a big difference. Whether the cause of your pain is unknown or has clear medical roots, our team is ready to support you.