Pain can be sudden (acute) or persistent (chronic).
It’s also something that can be nothing more than a temporary inconvenience. But if pain is seriously affecting your quality of life, it’s time to do something about it when attempts at self-care aren’t effective.
Take a moment to consider some of the reasons why you may benefit from a visit to the best pain specialist in Los Angeles.
You Don’t Know the Source of Your Pain
Self-care efforts may not be effective because you’re not treating the actual source of your symptoms. This also happens sometimes if you are relying on medication to mask your pain. In order to recommend treatments more likely to provide welcome relief, the best pain specialist in Los Angeles may perform tests that include:
- X-rays, CT scans, and other image tests
- Nerve conduction studies and similar specialized assessments
- Flexibility and range of motion testing
- Blood tests to look for underlying conditions that may be contributing to symptoms or increasing the sensation of pain
You Are Concerned About Medication Side Effects
The long-term use of certain medications, especially narcotics and anti-inflammatory drugs, can produce some unintended side effects. If you are concerned about such risks, the best pain specialist in Los Angeles may be able to recommend alternative pain management options that can also minimize symptoms. Possibilities include:
- Direct injections into the affected area
- Hot and cold therapy
- Therapeutic exercises
- Soft tissue manipulation and massage
You’re Looking to Avoid or Delay Surgery
There’s no guarantee surgery can be avoided altogether. However, the best pain specialist in Los Angeles may be able to help you explore conservative (non-surgical) treatment options you haven’t yet considered. For instance, some people are able to experience a noticeable reduction in pain with TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) units. It’s an approach to pain management that works by using mild electric impulses a patient can control to disrupt signals being sent by nerves.
Your Symptoms Have Changed Over Time
In some instances, treatments that have been helping for several months or years may no longer be effective. This sometimes happens if a new source of discomfort develops or the original source of the symptoms is affected by a new injury. A good example of this is what may happen if you are being treated for pain stemming from a weakened level of your spine and an entirely different level becomes affected due to a recent injury and triggers entirely new symptoms. A top L.A. pain specialist can perform specialized tests and conduct a thorough examination to determine if this may be the case.
The best pain specialist in Los Angeles is also someone you can expect to focus on your immediate and future needs. Such efforts may include offering recommendations on how to prevent re-injuring bones, joints, nerves, soft tissues, spinal discs, or any other structures that may have been a source of your discomfort. If, for example, you normally sit for most of your day at work, you may be advised to consider a sit-to-stand desk so you’re not over-stressing certain muscle groups.