Tips for Managing Chronic Pain
For some, pain is a common part of everyday life. While pain is viewed in a predominantly negative light, it helps give the body signals on what not to do for its own safety. Usually, pain lasts a short period of time, but sufferers of chronic pain know that this is not always the case. Chronic pain conditions can include migraines, Crohn’s disease, scoliosis, fibromyalgia, and many more. Being diagnosed with a chronic pain condition can be devastating, but with proper support, it is manageable. The constant discomfort can have a major impact on everyday life, so learning how to manage the pain is the key to living the best life possible.
Take time to listen to your body and determine what makes you feel better or worse. No one knows your body quite as well as you do, and paying close attention to your pain will allow you to better understand what triggers it. Knowing the triggers can help prevent at least some pain in the future. Start by ensuring your home environment is set up to accommodate your needs, whether that is a dark quiet room, first-floor laundry, a lift chair, or something else entirely. This is important for eliminating both physical and emotional triggers of chronic pain. It is also important to remove yourself from stressful situations that may heighten your pain. Relaxation can help ease chronic pain by giving your body time to recuperate. Having a space that is designed with your condition in mind can help eliminate stress and avoid emotional triggers.
Proper Diet and Exercise
The food you eat can also greatly affect your body, so choosing the right foods is very important for those with a chronic pain condition. While a nutritious diet and proper exercise are important for everyone, this can tricky to achieve if you suffer from chronic pain. Not only can certain foods trigger pain and inflammation, worsening your condition, but getting an appropriate amount of exercise can be difficult. At the same time, paying attention to certain foods and getting plenty of probiotics and prebiotics can help keep your gut health in check, which can, in turn, reduce inflammation and provide a number of health benefits. Ask your doctor to recommend a nutritionist and a physical therapist if appropriate. Finding out what foods to avoid with your illness can help get you on the right track.
Likewise, finding exercises that accommodate your pain rather than exacerbate it can help keep you motivated and prevent injuries. Exercise can also have a great impact on chronic pain by keeping your joints moving, keeping your muscles strong, helping you avoid obesity, and improving your mental health. The stress-relieving benefits of exercise are another great way to avoid emotional pain triggers.
Suffering from chronic pain daily is very difficult both physically and mentally. Many of those affected will reach a point where they are desperate to alleviate their pain. Medication may be the best option in some cases but should be used with caution and only under the supervision of a doctor. While some non-steroidal anti-inflammatories and natural supplements like CBD oil (which come in tinctures and gummies) have a very low risk of addiction, narcotic painkillers carry an extremely high risk and can lead to the use of dangerous illicit drugs. Painkillers may provide temporary relief but end up causing more harm than good in the long run. Instead of reaching for medication, seek emotional support through individualized therapy or a support group. Sharing your pain with others who understand what you are going through can provide more relief than any medication. Finding healthier alternatives for relief can allow you to live a healthier, more fulfilling lifestyle.
Life with a chronic pain condition is challenging, but it doesn’t have to define or control you. The illness is just one piece of the puzzle and not the complete picture. Removing things from your life that trigger pain is an important step. Maintaining a proper diet and getting exercise can ease the physical and mental triggers and help you avoid the need for and risks associated with using painkillers. Living your best life regardless of the circumstances is what is most important.
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