A lot of people are dealing with chronic pain. It takes a long time to find out the best relief methods that will surely work. There are many options to manage the pain, including hot and cold therapy, yoga, or drug treatments.
Pain that lasts longer than 3 months is known as chronic pain. It can develop after an injury or due to a medical issue. This pain can affect the person’s everyday activities and life, from work, sleep to mental health.
Chronic pain can often overlap with other conditions in a person’s mental health, including depression, social isolation, sleep problems, and overuse of medications.
What is Pain Management?
Techniques that help control and reduce the amount of pain a person is feeling over a longer period of time refer to the term “pain management”.
Many techniques can be used to deal with chronic pain, but not all of them include the use of medications.
- Physical Techniques
This category of pain management techniques includes Hot and Cold Therapy, massage, and acupuncture.
Hot and Cold Therapy is a very safe way to reduce pain, where the heat will help you relax muscles and dilate the blood vessels while promoting healing after injury, and cold therapy will reduce blood flow and reduce inflammation that causes pain. This therapy is simple, since all you have to do is apply a hot or cold compress to the skin.
To see any effects of massage when dealing with pain, you need to combine it with other management treatments, like pain medications or physical therapy. But the benefits from massages are definitely visible and you will notice a change in posture, reduced lower back pain, improved circulation, increased flexibility, and relaxation.
Many therapies that involve acupuncture have shown significant results in helping people manage their pain conditions. Although it is a different type of therapy that includes applying very thin needles to specific parts of the body, this technique is very effective in the short term and must be carried out by trained practitioners.
- Mind-Body Techniques
Even if it doesn’t seem like it at first, treatments that combine body and psychology are very effective for most people experiencing chronic pain.
Sometimes, physical methods are not enough for a person to recover from pain. Cognitive Behavior Therapy includes several psychological treatments to reduce the negative impact of pain on your mental health. The use of CBT can reduce pain immediately, along with reduced anxiety caused by the pain, and it can also improve the quality of your life.
Exercise can also help to reduce pain, and yoga seems to be the most effective types since it focuses on poses that feature stretching and focus on specific body parts.
- Drug Therapy
With a wide range of medications, each type can impact a person’s healing differently. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, mostly known as NSAIDs, are a group of medications that include tablets, creams, and gels that are mostly used for chronic pain.
However, people have noticed side effects after using them, like issues with the cardiovascular system and stomach, and have moved to other drug therapies like using cannabidiol, opioids, and medical cannabis.
More likely than not, your doctor has prescribed opioids to you for moderate-to-severe pain. The major risk, however, is that they can be very addictive.
A better option which has been used as a common alternative to opioids is medical cannabis.
Green Health Docs firmly believes that marijuana can be used as an alternative to harmful and addictive opioids. Fortunately, most states have legalized medical marijuana, including Arizona – so getting a medical cannabis certification may be a great alternative for you if you’re struggling with chronic pain. This certification will provide you with legal access to using marijuana dispensaries and receiving marijuana at home for medical purposes.
Before you begin implementing any of these pain management treatments, you should consult with a doctor and make sure they are safe and ensure that you will not have contrary effects. Most importantly, these treatments should not interfere with other medications you are already taking.