If pain symptoms are ruining your life, then don't hesitate to call a doctor! Millions of Americans suffer severe back pain related to car accidents or other injuries and don't call a professional. Millions of Americans suffer the pain of fibromyalgia or arthritis and feel they should just “grin and bear it. " However, there are many treatment options that could help you live a more fulfilling life. So what are you waiting for?
One of the first questions that most people ask their doctors is, “What causes chronic pain?" In some cases, the pain symptoms appear after an injury like a car accident or a fall. It is said that roughly 80% of Americans suffer back pain, whether it's sciatica, arthritis, disc problems, nerve malfunction or muscular problems.
This pain can be mild to severe. In other instances, an illness like shingles can leave patients in severe, lasting pain as well. In the case of fibromyalgia, doctors believe sufferers have a damaged central nerve system (neurogenic pain) that creates heightened nerve sensitivity that can be difficult to treat. Stress and hormonal factors can lead to what is called “psychogenic pain, " which is pain that responds to mental health changes.
When you experience pain symptoms, there are several self-help tactics to try. Be sure to record your efforts and the effectiveness in detail to show your doctor. Try eating a balanced diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and vitamin supplements.
Be sure that you are getting at least thirty minutes of exercise three times a week (or more), even if it's just walking or aquatic therapy. Try to avoid caffeine after 3pm and be sure to get a good night of rest by adhering to a set schedule.
Avoid taking naps in favor of sleeping the whole night through. Stop smoking and take steps to reduce stress in your everyday life. Try assisting devices like canes, braces, or elevated toilet seats.
Sometimes, using a hot or cold pack can help ease targeted pain. Hot baths, massages and music therapy can help ease chronic pain. Alternative therapies, such as acupuncture, tai chi, meditation, drinking tea and wearing magnetic bracelets have been known to help in some cases.
At the end of the day, your doctor may decide that chronic pain medication is the best way to treat your particular symptoms. Pain medication can include something you can just grab over-the-counter from your local pharmacist, such as acetaminophen, Ibuprofen or Aspirin, or it can be a stronger prescription med like antidepressants, anticonvulsants, analgesics or cortocosteroids. Though many hate to be medicated, it's an effective way of “getting over the hump. "
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