Chronic pain refers to pain that lasts for more than 12 weeks. If you or a loved one has been suffering from back or neck pain, arthritis or migraines, you are not alone. Millions of Americans are affected, to varying degrees, by chronic pain.
While acute pain is normal and works as a warning sign so that you can address the underlying condition, chronic pain is different. Chronic pain is persistent and affects all aspects of a person’s life.
Pain is also complex. Every individual’s pain is different even if the underlying condition is the same. Pain itself can feel different – it can be aching, sharp, shooting, burning, nagging or radiating. Chronic pain makes life too unpredictable and sometimes it even getting out of bed can be a struggle.
Studies show that chronic pain can affect a person’s brain chemistry and even alter the nervous system. Nerve cells of a person with chronic pain, especially in the part of the brain that processes emotion, degenerate faster than normal, causing depression and anxiety. Untreated chronic pain can reduce a person’s quality of life and lifespan.
This means that pain can turn a person’s world upside down. It can make turn the simplest of tasks into a challenge, limiting your activity, and leaving the person with no joy in life.
Pain management clinics and doctors understand the seriousness of chronic pain and how it can devastate a person’s life. They can help you in several ways – to manage your pain, allow you to do what you love and improve overall quality of life.
Pain management specialists analyze your pain and the factors that contribute to it. After evaluation, the doctor would discuss with you all treatment options available, based on your specific case. Then, a treatment plan will be customized to help you obtain relief and improve your quality of life as soon as possible.
Pain management doctors use minimally invasive methods, such as epidural steroid injections, facet joint injections and nerve blocks to address the underlying cause of pain rather than simply giving you painkilling medication.