Any type of pain can affect every aspect of your life. When the pain is chronic — meaning the pain is basically consistent — you may have to make some serious changes to your life. Unfortunately, chronic pain is not always curable (if it was, there would not be such a thing as chronic pain.) However, it is treatable. The treatments are not always quick fixes; you may stay in pain for a while before they take effect. In addition, they may not last as long as you would like, but any relief at all is a good thing. If you follow your pain management doctor's recommendations, you will find that the pain that once altered your life can be bearable enough for you to get back on track. Here are a few things you should understand about pain management treatments.
The first thing you need to understand is that narcotics should not be a part of your long-term pain management routine. While they may be the fastest way to relive the pain, they are also very addictive. You will end up using more and more as your body becomes used to the effects, and trying to get off of them can be very dangerous. If your doctor wants you to take narcotics to start the treatment, make sure you discuss the overall plan with them. The narcotics should be only for a few days and at a minimum dosage. Once the initial prescription is used, there should not be any further narcotic use.
Although it may be painful, a good pain management regimen should include a lot of physical therapy. The more you use the joints and muscles in the affected area in a controlled, intensive setting, the less painful they will be during normal daily activities. Sure, you may hurt for a few days when you first get started and when you increase intensity, but as your body becomes accustomed to the exercise, it will feel better. However, you need to understand that you may need to have other treatments first, such as surgery, so that the exercises don't cause further damage. Your pain management doctor will be able to tell you when and how much physical therapy you need.
Because chronic pain affects so much of your life, it is a good idea to seek out psychological counseling. It can help you to control your emotions and moods when you are struggling with pain. It can also help you to relax so you can minimize the pain.
While the hopeful outcome for chronic pain is a way to stop it completely, this may take time. The best thing you can do for yourself is to work with a pain management team to help you get through the pain until a true cure can be found. Contact pain management doctors to learn more.