Sometimes you have to get more involved in your own pain management. A few ways to deal with chronic pain; however, as in all cases of acute and chronic pain, check with your attending physician before starting any new regiment. The idea here is to improve overall health and by doing so, reducing your chronic pain.  Now your illness or level of pain may limit or prevent you from doing some of the items listed, that’s okay, do what your comfort level allows for and most importantly do everything with your personal safety in mind.

Always Check with Your Doctor Before Trying New Things!

The first item is to get moving.  Just do what you can do, if you can walk comfortably, take a little walk.  If you can’t walk, do some exercises from your chair.  Everyone can do something! Just thirty minutes of aerobic activity will release endorphins that will boost your mood and may even decrease your perception of pain. Remember, ask your doctor what type of aerobic exercises are appropriate for you.The second item is to get centered, mind-body interventions, deep breathing, biofeedback, and meditation may help with chronic pain.  Again, ask your doctor what is appropriate for you.The third item is to take it easy with alcoholic beverages especially at bedtime.  Alcohol reduces deep, restorative REM sleep.  Try a cup of tea before bed instead. Next on the list, is get rid of those cigarettes, tobacco is associated with many detrimental health effects that may increase pain over the long run. Next on the list is eating well, a diet that is high in anti-inflammatory foods such as lean protein, colorful fruits and veggies, whole grains, nuts, legumes and healthy fats keep your body strong and help to fight pain. This would be a good area to discuss with your doctor as certain foods help certain conditions.

Pain Management

Take notes or keep a pain journal.  Keep track of your pain levels throughout the day.  Do certain activities increase your pain?  Does anything improve your pain? This can help you and your doctor understand what’s going on with your pain. Next is simply, make time to just relax. When you suffer from chronic pain, you must set limits on certain activities. Next is making use of distractions, it gets your mind off of pain signals.Participate in your treatment, follow the doctor’s instructions, and speak up if you have side effects or your condition gets worse. Next is social support, don’t isolate, socializing goes a long way in coping with pain.

Follow What Your Doctor Prescribes

Next is being careful with over-the-counter medications, they can cause major problems.  Check with your doctor before adding any medications. Prescription pain medications can cause constipation, drink plenty of water, eat colorful fruits and veggies and take a laxative when needed.  Discuss this with your doctor if it becomes an issue.Other medications beside opiate medications may be used for chronic pain, anti-seizure and anti-depressants, muscle relaxants, nerve blocks and other injectable treatments.  Tell your doctor if you experience any side effects. Think outside of the box, give acupuncture a try, it’s proven to be effective for chronic pain. Listen to more music.  Listening to music that you enjoy can help reduce chronic pain. If you are suffering from acute or chronic pain, contact Lifestream Health Center in Bowie, Maryland for an appointment (301)-860-0305. Pain management is very important when a person is suffering from acute or chronic pain.

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