Most people consider “regular” pain something with an obvious cause and duration, like a scraped knee which eventually heals. But pain that isn’t regular – its cause is mysterious, and it persists, even with treatment – may be considered “chronic” if it lasts more than three months. But treatment options are available.
What Is Chronic Pain?
“There are 2 types of pain: acute and chronic. Acute pain lets you know that your body is injured. It usually doesn’t last long. It should go away as your body heals. Chronic pain lasts much longer. Chronic pain may last months or even years. Chronic pain may interfere with your daily activities.” And because the pain may last indefinitely, people who experience it may also have psychological issues requiring therapy. One option: ketamine treatment.
Where Can You Have Chronic Pain?
Chronic pain can happen in many different forms and appear across your body:
- Arthritis, or joint pain
- Back pain
- Cancer pain by a tumor
- Headaches, particularly migraines
- Long-lasting pain in scar tissue
- Muscle pain in many locations, such as from fibromyalgia
- Neurogenic pain, from harm to the nerves or other sections of your nervous system
Thankfully, many people who suffer from chronic pain throughout their body have found relief with various treatments, including ketamine therapy.
Chronic Pain Symptoms
People suffering from chronic pain often have trouble with emotions, physical health, and social interactions. The condition may lead to other symptoms:
- Bad sleep
- Feeling wiped out or very tired
- Loss of interest in pleasurable activities
- Drug or alcohol misuse
- Relationship or family problems
- Job loss
- Suicidal thoughts
Usual symptoms of chronic pain include moderate to very bad pain that does not completely disappear as expected following an injury or illness.
How Do You Treat Chronic Pain?
There are many options for treating chronic pain, including self-care and lifestyle changes. When recommending treatment, your doctor may suggest a combination of choices based on your health, and the severity and duration of pain. Popular ways to treat chronic pain include:
- Ketamine therapy. Once used for anesthesia, ketamine is now a powerful weapon in the battle against symptoms of chronic pain, mental illness, and other kinds of pain long resistant to other forms of therapy.
- Cold can be helpful quickly following an injury to alleviate pain, reduce inflammation and muscle spasms, and foster speedy recovery. Heat boosts your pain threshold and eases muscles.
- Exercise. Remaining physically active, even with pain, can be a helpful method for people experiencing some of the more familiar pain conditions, like low back pain, fibromyalgia, and arthritis.
- Weight loss. Many painful health ailments are exacerbated by extra weight. It’s reasonable, then, that reducing weight may help to reduce some forms of pain.
- Physical therapy (PT) and occupational therapy (OT). PT works to maintain or restore your means to move and walk. OT helps better your capability to handle activities of daily living, like dressing, bathing, and eating.
- Psychological care may also treat symptoms of chronic pain.
- Some people who suffer from chronic pain also try alternative therapies, including acupuncture, nutritional supplements, massage therapy, herbal therapy, and dietary changes.
- Mind-body therapies like relaxation techniques, meditation, and guided imagery.
Finally, ask a medical professional about the effectiveness of any treatment before trying it on your own.
If you suffer from chronic pain, get medical attention for a diagnosis and possible treatment. Different tests may be performed to discover the cause of the pain:
- Blood tests
- Electromyography to assess muscle activity
- Imaging tests, such as MRI and X-rays
- Nerve conduction investigations to determine if your nerves are responding properly
- Reflex and balance tests
- Spinal fluid tests
- Urine tests
Though pain is subjective, diagnosis may result in successful treatment options for pain management.
What Causes Chronic Pain?
Sometimes, chronic pain is triggered by an infection or old injury or caused by a disease. Sometimes the cause for the pain remains unknown. Ailments that may trigger, worsen, or cause chronic pain include:
- headaches or migraines
- back problems
- nerve damage
- previous surgery
- Depression and stress
What About Ketamine?
Since its introduction as a pre-surgical anesthetic, doctors, researchers, and private citizens believed ketamine had other therapeutic value – suspicions which were borne out with promising results treating symptoms of chronic pain, mental illness, and others.
If you’re suffering from the effects of chronic pain and looking for a treatment option that works, call us today to learn more about how we can help you find relief.