If your pain is incapacitatedTracey R
Pain can completely change our lives. Continuous pain problems can lead to disabilities, such as not being able to work, drive or even maintain a home. Pain in a dominant hand or arm can make it difficult to button a shirt, comb or wear food. Low back pain can make it hard for you to sit, stand, bend, tie shoelaces or almost anything else you can imagine. Intense and recurring headaches, such as migraines, can make it hard to concentrate, listen, read, eat or even turn on the lights.
This type of pain, continuous and that significantly interferes with important life activities, is called chronic high-impact pain .
Research conducted on chronic high-impact pain by groups such as the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health has published some important findings:
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Approximately 10.6 million Americans, or 4.8% of the population, have chronic high-impact pain.
Disability is usually more commonly associated with chronic pain than with a number of other chronic conditions, such as stroke and kidney failure.
Those with high-impact chronic pain reported higher levels of mental health problems and cognitive problems, compared to those with chronic pain without disability.
High impact patients reported greater difficulty in performing daily self-care activity and greater use of medical care. These findings suggest that a large number of people not only live with severe pain, but also experience life-altering limitations as a result.
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When the pain becomes so overwhelming, pain management becomes a much greater challenge. Finding the best strategies to relieve pain and at the same time exploring ways to participate more in daily activities can seem a daunting task. How can you reduce the effect that pain has on your life without undoing all the hard work you have done to better control pain?
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For starters, I think it helps to concentrate on just a couple of tasks at a time. What function or activity would be more meaningful to have in your life? For example, becoming a little more mobile can mean the difference between spending more time with friends or getting lost, and being able to cook a precious recipe once again will delight everyone who enjoys it with you. Consider consulting with an occupational therapist who usually specializes in helping patients improve skills that increase their ability to perform activities at home or at work.
It is not easy to do any activity you have not done in a long time. There is a good chance that the pain has caused important muscle groups to become deconditioned and stiff, and exaggerating too quickly will only cause pain. But building a strong base or core that can help support the arms, legs and spine as they become more active helps prevent excessive stress. Working with a physical therapist or an exercise expert can help you find ways to recondition key muscle groups and develop greater fundamental or central stability, so you can do more with less pain.
Reducing the impact of pain is a much higher order than becoming physically stronger. Research has taught us that those who live with chronic high-impact pain often experience psychological distress and mood disorders such as depression and anxiety. It is difficult to function when you feel overwhelmed, so try to get involved in practices that can provide a sense of calm: meditation, yoga, breathing exercises, enjoying nature or seeing a counselor have the potential to help.
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If you suffer from a challenging chronic pain problem and feel that you and your doctors have done everything possible to control your symptoms, consider talking with your health care team about how you could lessen the impact your pain has on your life.
Clarification: This publication was modified to make it clear that the piece is intended to reduce the effects that high impact pain has on the daily routines of patients; It is not intended to address pain management.