3 Steps To Reduce Chronic Pain
There are a wide variety of ailments that cause chronic pain, including arthritis, fibromyalgia, and autoimmune conditions. In fact, the NIH found that over 11% of Americans suffer from chronic pain when it is defined as pain that persists every day for 3 or more months. This is clearly a prevalent problem that can take a toll on an individual’s physical, mental, and emotional health, as well as impair their day-to-day functionality. However, there are ways to greatly reduce the degree of pain experienced and restore quality of life.
Step 1: Symptom Journaling
Symptom journaling is a simple as it sounds. The sufferer should keep a book and notate certain things in it on a daily basis. A few things that are usually helpful to include are meals and snacks, medications, and detailed information about when symptoms onset or regress, as well as their severity. The purpose of this is to determine what eases or exacerbates the symptoms. This can often help by highlighting small habit changes that can add up to significant pain relief.
Step 2: Explore Alternative Treatments
Alternative medicine is a term that is often met with skepticism, yet most physicians agree that the less medicine a person is dependent on, the better off they are. The truth is that there are several alternative treatment options that are safe, backed by biomedical research and offer results. One of these options is chiropractic care. Chiropractors are trained for nearly a decade and are able to treat more than just back pain. Other options to consider include acupuncture, yoga, and aromatherapy, all of which can be used in conjunction with pharmaceutical medications. It may take several trials to find the combination of treatments that is most effective because everyone is different.
Step 3: Talk To Your Doctor
A physician can aid in the process of determining the best pain management plan. However, this requires communication. This is something that a symptom journal can help with because it provides a record of what has worked and what can still be improved. Another part of the discussion should include any other treatments that you would like to try including supplements and exercises. They can help determine if these will be safe and effective for the case. This will also give them the opportunity to make sure that there won’t be any negative drug interactions. In any case, they can’t help if they are unaware that the pain is persisting.